It is with a heavy heart that we report the passing of Dan Kneen, who died from the injuries he sustained during Wednesday’s Superbike qualifying session for the Isle of Man TT.
The 30-year-old Isle of Man native crashed his Tyco BMW S1000RR at Churchtown, during the first lap of the qualifying session, which was subsequently red-flagged and stopped.
According to a statement by the ACU, which sanctions the TT races, Kneen died at the scene of the incident.
The 2018 Isle of Man TT is underway and Asphalt & Rubber has you covered to get up to date with some of the biggest names at the Isle of Man TT.
The road racing capital of the world is rarely called a paradise, but it is hard to look past that word when the sun shines on this 200 square miles of rock in the Irish Sea.
This week the sun is certainly shining, and practice week has already been one to remember. Lap records look set to be shattered as this past winter is banished from memory by the burning sun.
Take a good long look at it, because here is the electric motorcycle that is going to win this year’s TT Zero race at the Isle of Man TT.
That might seem like a presumptuous thing to say, but with Mugen fielding a three-rider lineup, and no real competition coming out of the woodwork, it would be hard to imagine a different result.
The question of course is which riders will be onboard the Mugen Shinden Nana when it takes the #1 position? John McGuinness? Bruce Anstey? Or, Lee Johnston?
Your guess is as good as ours, as all three road-racers are more than capable of putting down a race-winning lap on the Mugen.
Honda Motor Europe just announced its road racing squad for the 2018 season, welcoming Ian Hutchinson and Lee Johnston to team. The duo should be a strong lineup for Honda, and it is fairly big news to see Hutchy with Big Red for next season.
The bigger news though is that today’s announcement leaves us asking what happened to John McGuinness, the 23-time race winner at the Isle of Man TT being absent from Honda’s racing announcement.
Missing the 2017 TT because of injuries he sustained at this year’s North West 200, doubt had been cast over McPint’s road racing future.
Always chasing the high-water mark left behind by 26-time TT race winner Joey Dunlop, McGuinness has to contend with a new generation of fast racers, his age and health, and a troublesome racing package in the Honda CBR1000RR SP2.
This leaves the question, are we just marking time before we hear a retirement announcement? Or, is something else afoot?
With five podium-finishes at this year’s Isle of Man TT, Peter Hickman is the man to watch in future TT fortnights, as the 30-year-old is showing tremendous talent and progress with his racing.
Helping Hickman to those finishes in the superbike classes (Superbike TT, Superstock TT, and Senior TT) was the BMW HP4, the Bavarian brand’s carbon-fiber-everything liter-bike that was just unveiled earlier this year.
A talented rider, an amazing machine, and one of the most iconic race tracks in the world? That sounds like the recipe for an epic onboard video.
Grab a stopwatch before you click play though, and see how much time Hickman’s front wheel spends in the air. It’s impressive.
If you took a straw poll from road racers, the Ballagarey corner would likely rank highest on the list of places found on the Isle of Man TT race course that scared these otherwise two-wheeled warriors.
The corner has such a reputation, that the name “Balla-Scary” has been coined to describe this fast section of the track, situated between the 3rd and 4th milestones. In 2010, Ballagarey claimed the life of racer Paul Dobbs, and a day later Guy Martin escaped a fiery crash there as well.
While every TT rider surely knows the reputation of Ballagarey, at this year’s Isle of Man TT, it was James Hillier who found a new respect for that part of the Mountain Course, having a huge moment on his Kawasaki superbike, during the Senior TT race. You can watch this miracle save, after the jump.
Ian Hutchinson might have a broken femur bone right now, but all-in-all he is a pretty lucky man. Crashing during the Senior TT at the 2017 Isle of Man TT, the 16-time TT race winner had a horrific off while coming over the mountain section of the famed road racing course.
It is suspected that Hutchinson suffered from a punctured front tire, which caused the crash. That revelation though probably does little to change the fact that Hutchinson will once again have to recover from a serious injury to his left leg.
Hutchinson is expected to fully heal from his broken femur, though one has to wonder if he can ever truly recover from this crash at the 27th Milestone. You will understand what we mean, after you watch the embedded video.
The final race of the 2017 Isle of Man TT, the Pokerstars Senior TT is the competition that every rider wants to win. The “Blue Ribbon” event of race week, the six-lap Senior TT is the crown jewel to the TT fortnight.
Once again, a TT race was framed around two riders: Ian Hutchinson and Michael Dunlop. Hutchinson came into the Senior TT with two race wins on his tally, one from the Superbike TT and one from the Superstock TT.
Riding on the BMW S1000RR, Hutchinson has a race-proven machine under him, and he has been riding in the form of his life. Contrast that with Michael Dunlop, who has been doing the donkey work in developing the new Suzuki GSX-R1000R as a formidable TT racing machine.
Dunlop comes into the Senior TT with only one win – earned during the Supersport TT Race 1 – with the jump to the GSX-R1000R still not panning out like he would have hoped.
With this in mind, we head into the Senior TT – a race, once again, defined by two riders.