The opening practice session for the Southern 100 was delayed because of a technical problem with the course communications system on Monday evening.

The proceedings came to a halt early in the schedule after the newcomers had completed their compulsory sighting laps.

The resultant delay of approximately 45-minutes forced organisers to amend several qualifying sessions.

There was also a deterioration in the weather with damp roads after showers of rain.

Peel-based Mikey Evans topped the charts in the unlimited class on the Wilcock Consultant’s 1000cc BMW with a relatively low speed of 98.385mph in the sketchy conditions.

Returning from the broken collarbone injury he suffered in a spill during the Pre-TT Classic on the same course at the end of May, Evans was more than five seconds quicker Mark Parrett and Manxman Ryan Kneen. Reigning S100 champion Dean Harrison was only sixth quickest and Michael Dunlop 10th.

Harrison led the way in the 600cc class from Jamie Coward and Dominic Herbertson, with young Nathan Harrison the leading local in a provisional seventh spot.

Pete Founds and Jevan Walmsley were the quickest of the sidecars at a fraction under 90mph average, followed by Lee Crawford/Scott Hardie and defending champions Tim Reeves/Mark Wilkes.

This evening, Tuesday’s, practice session commences at 6.20, with roads closing round the 4.25-mile Billown Course closing from 6pm.