Ian Hutchinson broke the 130mph barrier for the first time at this year’s Isle of Man TT as the Tyco BMW rider laid down a marker ahead of this Saturday’s opening RST Superbike race.
36-year-old Hutchinson, who won three races at last year’s event and finished on the podium in all five main races, lapped the 37.75-mile course at 130.626mph on Tuesday night, as the perfect conditions continued on the island with riders practicing for race week.
Hutchinson was pushed close by 23-time TT winner John McGuinness, who lapped the circuit at 129.618mph on his Honda to set the second fastest time of the evening, although a number of other riders chose to session to work on the set-ups for their superstock and supersport machines.
Bruce Anstey continued to test the new MotoGP-spec Padgett’s Honda RC213V-S – commonly seen under Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa in the world championship – with the New Zealander posting a lap of 128.976mph, although he appeared to be on course for a much faster lap and the belief is that there is plenty more to come from Anstey if he chooses to go with the RC213V-S as opposed to his normal superbike.
Hutchinson also heads the superstock times after setting a 1.28.723 on the Tyco BMW, while Anstey tops the supersport time sheets after his lap of 124.46mph was marginally quicker than the fastest lap from Monday’s session, set by Dean Harrison on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki.
Hutchinson and Michael Dunlop have also lapped at over 124mph on their respective supersport machines to sit in third and fourth.
In the lightweight class, Ivan Lintin continues to set the benchmark after winning last year’s supertwin event, with the Lincolnshire native setting an average lap speed of 118.00 on the Devitt RC Express Racing Kawasaki.
Heading into Wednesday evening’s session for all classes except the lightweight category, Hutchinson, McGuinness, Dunlop, Peter Hickman, Conor Cummins and Harrison have all surpassed 129mph lap times, with the 132.701mph lap record set by McGuinness last year well in the field’s sights should conditions remain as they have been for the first three days of practice.
Riders have sessions on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to practice before the RST Superbike TT gets underway at 11am on Saturday morning, with a superstock, supersport and lightweight practice session scheduled for Saturday afternoon after the opening Sure Sidercar TT race.