Yorkshire rider Dean Harrison stunned the TT paddock by becoming only the second rider to lap the iconic 37.73-mile course in under 17 minutes during last night’s practice for the Isle of Man road races.
Riding on board the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki ZX-10RR, the 29-year-old became only the second rider lapped at an average of 133.462mph, less than four seconds (and 0.2mph) shy of Michael Dunlop’s 2016 lap record.
Harrison’s pace has created a buzz around the Island ahead of Saturday’s opening Superbike TT. This year’s races have been rocked by the withdrawal of big guns John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey, while Ian Hutchison remains at less than full fitness on his first year with the Honda Racing team.
Harrison and fellow up-and-comer Peter Hickman are emerging as the main rivals to the dominant Dunlop at TT2018. Hickman was fastest in last night’s Superstock qualifying on his BMW, while Manxman Dan Kneen is another emerging talent to impress in practice. He set the third fastest time in the superbike class, where he is team-mate to Dunlop in the Tyco BMW squad.