Ian Lougher celebrated his 21st Isle of Man TT anniversary, by taking a superb victory in the Supersport Junior TT aboard the Team DMRR Honda Racing CBR600RR today. It is the first time the race has been won by a Honda-mounted rider since Jim Moodie took the top spot in 1999.
Following his well-earned second place finish in the Scottish Life International TT Superstock race this morning, 38-year-old Lougher dominated this afternoon’s four-lap Supersport event. On the first lap he posted the second best time at Glen Helen but by the Ballaugh Bridge, the County Down-based rider had improved his time significantly and had taken the lead.
This year’s Supersport event was by far one of the most competitive races in the history of the TT, but Team DMRR Honda Racing’s experienced road racer Lougher made it look easy. His time at the chequered flag was an impressive 1:14:52.84 and his victory margin over second-placed John McGuinness was more than 22 seconds. It is Lougher’s seventh TT victory to date.
This year’s triumph also marks a certain significance for Honda as it celebrates its 123rd TT victory so far. The Japanese manufacturer has been contesting the infamous road-racing event for 45 years, but Lougher’s impressive Supersport victory proves the capabilities of the CBR600RR – one of Honda’s best selling motorcycles.
Following a compelling final-lap battle with Jason Griffiths for third place, Lougher’s Team DMRR Honda Racing team-mate Richard Britton was forced to retire at the Ballaugh Bridge because of technical problems with the Supersport machine.
Ian Lougher: ”That was fantastic – I knew that it was going to be tough early on so was concentrating hard all of the way, but then Ryan [Farquhar] went out, leaving John [McGuinness] in second place.
"I got my head down because I wanted to beat him fair and square – he is the lap record holder, and it means a lot to get ahead of him and take this victory. The Team DMRR Honda Racing CBR600RR is a magic bike around here – it handles so well and has great corner speed, and that is just what I needed.
Richard Britton: “It’s unfortunate that I couldn’t complete race distance – but it couldn’t be helped. I was doing really well, and was right up there for most of the race. The CBR600RR is a really great bike and I’m sure I could have been joining Ian [Lougher] on the podium. It’s unlucky, but there are other races.”
Supersport Junior TT race result
1.I. Lougher (Team DMRR Honda Racing) 1:14:52.84;
2. J. McGuinness (Yamaha) 1:15:15.46; 3. J. Griffiths (Yamaha) 1:15:50.07; 4. B. Anstey (Suzuki) 1:15:56.10; 5. G. Martin (Honda) 1:16:25.36; 6. R. Porter (Yamaha) 1:16:29.25; 7. D. Lindsay (Honda) 1:16:35.18; 8. A. Archibald (Suzuki) 1:17:00.04; 9. J. Maeda (Honda) 1:17:06.03; 10. N. Beattie (Yamaha) 1:17:13.69
Photographs courtesy of Baylon McCaughey