TT 2018: What the perfect mountain course lap now looks like…
This year’s Isle of Man TT Races have seen records smashed in every class so far and we’re still only half way through race week. Needless to say, the stunning laps laid down by Dean Harrison, Peter Hickman and Michael Dunlop has seen record times across the sectors around the 37.73-mile Mountain Course with every one now held by a different rider from when we arrived.
Dean Harrison’s record breaking feats in Saturday’s Superbike race saw him, at one stage, hold the fastest time in every sector, including bettering Steve Plater’s time from Ramsey to the Bungalow which had, amazingly, stood since 2009.
However, whilst he still has the record times for the first three sectors, essentially the first half of the course, Monday’s Superstock race saw the second three sectors be improved upon further.
Hickman smashed the Ramsey to Bungalow sector on lap four of the race, when he set a new lap record of 134.403mph, the new time being almost two seconds quicker than what Plater did. The Smiths Racing BMW rider also claimed the penultimate sector on his second lap, which was also above 134mph, but Michael Dunlop still holds onto the final short sector from Cronk ny Mona to the Grandstand, set during Saturday’s Superbike race when he hunted down Harrison.
The new, best sector times are as follows:
Start to Glen Helen = Dean Harrison (Lap 2, 2018 Superbike) = 4’07.716s
Glen Helen to Ballaugh = Dean Harrison (Lap 1, 2018 Superbike) = 3’00.620s
Ballaugh to Ramsey = Dean Harrison (Lap 1, 2018 Superbike) = 3’11.129s
Ramsey to Bungalow = Peter Hickman (Lap 4, 2018 Superstock) = 3’11.671s
Bungalow to Cronk ny Mona = Peter Hickman (Lap 2, 2018 Superstock) = 2’13.220s
Cronk ny Mona to Grandstand = Michael Dunlop (Lap 3, 2018 Superbike) = 56.603s
This equates to the perfect lap being an almost unbelievable 16’40.959s or 135.698mph. That’s almost ten seconds quicker than the actual lap record with Harrison’s opening lap on Saturday being 16m50.384s, 134.432mph.
So when the riders are saying a lap in excess of 135mph will be required to win the Senior, you can clearly see that it’s a definite possibility.