Southern 100 to celebrate diamond jubilee meeting

Dean Harrison and Guy Martin were the most successful solo riders at the 2014 Southern 100

Dean Harrison and Guy Martin were the most successful solo riders at the 2014 Southern 100

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A bumper entry marks out this year’s diamond jubilee Southern 100 road races which start in Castletown on Monday evening.

The so-called friendly races are marking 60 years on the 4.25-mile Billown course running from the outskirts of the island’s ancient capital.

The action kicks off at 6.20pm on Monday evening with sighting laps for the Newcomers, followed by practice sessions for all classes. Practices continue from 6.15pm on Tuesday with the first race at 8pm.

This will be the seven-lap 1000cc/600cc race which with three former winners, Guy Martin, Dean Harrison and Michael Dunlop, numbered 1.2 and 3 respectively, is likely to be a close and well contested battle.

Also vying for the honours will be Braddan’s Dan Kneen, along with brother Ryan at number 7 and William Dunlop at number 6. Last year’s Manx Grand Prix Senior race winner Andrew Soar from Loughborough is at number 25.

A healthy field of 32 is contesting the six-lap 400cc/125cc race and the four-lap sidecar race is headed again by two previous event winners, Conrad Harrison and this year’s double sidecar winner, Mansfield’s Ben Birchall.

Dave Molyneux is a non-starter. See page 63 for more details.

Racing continues on Wednesday evening then all day on Thursday culminating in the traditional open air prize presentation on Thursday night. This is in a new location this year, starting at 8.30pm between the Viking and Sidings pubs, by Castletown railway station.

Long-standing clerk of the course Phil Taubmann, who first supported the races by putting out bales as a teenager was honoured with an illuminated address by Castletown commissioners recently. A pre S100 church service will take place at 3pm on Sunday July 5 at the church fittingly by Church Bends on the course.

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