Bruce Anstey made history when he became the first rider of a 250cc machine to lap the Mountain Course at an average speed in excess of 120mph.
He did it on the second lap of the Dunlop Tyres-sponsored Lightweight race when setting a lap of 18min 47.8sec, an average of 120.475mph, despite slowing down to enter pit lane for fuel.
The New Zealander had already been the first to officially lap sub-19 minutes for his standing start lap. He led the race from the word go on the Padgett’s Motorcycles RS250 and had an advantage of 51 seconds at half-distance over local man Dan Sayle.
The latter’s brave race came to an end with retirement shortly after Glen Duff on lap three, elevating Michael Rutter to second place on the 750 Ducati.
He came under pressure from Ian Lougher on the final lap, but Rutter held on to take the number two spot by 2.3s - albeit the best part of one-and-a-half minutes down on flying Kiwi Anstey.
‘The bike ran beautifully,’ said 48-year-old Anstey, who shattered his own race record by 1min 14.35sec. ‘Clive Padgett worked all winter to get this bike right and our aim was always to crack the 120 lap, so I’m really pleased.’
Fourth place went to Ivan Lintin, fifth Phil Harvey and sixth Daniel Cooper after Gary Vines retired almost within sight of the finish at Governor’s Bridge.
Full race reports in Tuesday’s edition of the Isle of Man Examiner.
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