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Dunlop destroys them to take Carole Nash Supertwin win


Michael Dunlop destroyed the opposition to win this evening’s first Carole Nash Supertwin TT, taking the honours from Mike Browne to move onto 24 career wins – making him the second most successful TT of all time, and just two behind his uncle Joey as the greatest of all time.




Dunlop made his intentions clear from the start, shooting into a 4.5 second lead from Jamie Coward at the first sector, stretching it to nine seconds at Ballaugh.




The 34-year-old’s MD Racing Paton clocked just under 160mph through the Sulby Straight speed trap and had a lead of 14 seconds by the time the riders came in for their mandatory pit stop at the end of lap one.




With Dunlop in control and managing his pace, the attention turned to the battle for second, with Irishman Mike Browne, who started back in 16th, pushing through on his Burrows Racing/RK Engineering Paton, to overhaul Kawasaki-mounted Coward and take his first TT podium in second on lap two.




The pair were separated by fractions of a second on corrected time for most of the second half of the three-lap dash, with 2.2 seconds between the two at the flag – 26 seconds back from the winner.




Fresh from winning the earlier RL360 Superstock race, Peter Hickman finished almost a minute down, fourth on his PHR Performance Yamaha R7. The 2022 race winner made a switch from the well proven Paton to the brand-new Yamaha for this year, and was a surprise inclusion after failing to record any laps on the R7 during qualifying practice. He was allowed in after completing a lap during the afternoon’s warm up lap, with the intention of using the race as an opportunity to gain experience of the bike ahead of Friday’s second Carole Nash Supertwin TT.



Josh Brookes equalled his career best TT finish in fifth, on board the RC Express Dafabet Racing Kawasaki.

Dunlop’s victory made up, at least in part, for missing out on the 2022 Supertwin after bike troubles. The Paton factory sent a technician over from Italy to work on his bike after problems in practice, with the rider declaring the bike ‘mint’ and with potential for much more. He said: “We had an issue during the week and Andrea, who builds the motorbike, drove for two days from Italy at the weekend after his flight was cancelled. The bike was fantastic. We just nursed it. I knew from last year that the wee bike was good, and we proved that today. It was a dream to ride, and I was fortunate to be in a position to calm the bike down and take the win.”




Browne’s second place marks his first ever podium at the Isle of Man TT Races. He added: “We had a really good week of qualifying on the big bikes, but things went a bit backwards on the big bikes. I had a lot of pit boards out there and I could see them from between P2 and P3. I was coming over the Mountain and I nearly broke my teeth! I missed a gear, then I had a backmarker on the way down again. I gave it my all over the Mountain. It feels good, but I need to get used to it (the feeling of being on the podium).”




Pragmatic Coward, whose previous best TT finish was a second in the same race in 2019, said after the race: “It was a good race. I could see from my board that someone was catching, and I thought it might be Mike on the Paton. It is what it is. I’d have liked to have finished second but it’s still a podium and no shame.”




The good news for the riders is that they get to do it all again, with the second three-lap Carole Nash Supertwin TT scheduled for 2pm this Friday.




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