It was a long time coming, but sidecar racer Conrad Harrison can add one accomplishment to his resume: Isle of Man TT winner. Harrison, along with passenger Mike Aylott won the first of two Sure Sidecar TT races. The win was the first for Harrison since he made his Isle of Man TT debut 21 years ago in 1993.
Harrison and Aylott benefited from the retirement of two of the favorites. Racing brothers Ben and Tom Birchall – winners of the Sidecar 2 races last year – and 16-time TT winner Dave Molyneux and partner Patrick Farrance were the early leaders after the first lap but neither team completed the three-lap race.
The Birchalls grabbed the early lead and completed the first lap about four seconds ahead of Molyneux and Farrance. The Birchalls crashed on Lap 2 however, sustaining minor injuries but ending their race. That gave the lead to Molyneux and Farrance who set an impressive race-best time of 19:35.612 (115.535 mph) on the second lap.
Molyneux and Farrance had a comfortable 21-second lead over John Holden and Andy Winkle in second while Harrison and Aylott another second back in third place. Molyneux and Farrance failed to make it to the first commentary point Glen Helen on the final lap, pulling out with engine problems.
The close battle for second between Holden/Winkle and Harrison/Aylott then became a fight for victory with less than a second separating the two teams. Harrison and Aylott had more left in them on that final lap however, setting a personal-best average speed of 114.674 to win by 17 seconds. Holden and Winkle finished second followed by last year’s Sidecar 1 winner Tim Reeves and new partner Gregory Cluze.
|2014 Isle of Man TT: Sidecar TT 1 Top Five Results|
|Shelbourne Honda||59:34.820||113.987 mph|
|LCR/Sillicone Engineering/Barnes Racing||59:51.823||113.448 mph|
|Yamaha/Ian Bell Motorcycles||1:01:31.122||110.396 mph|
|Kawasaki/T D Racing||1:01:32.236||110.362 mph|