2012 Southern 100: Michael Dunlop takes win tally to five

Dunlop on his way to a record five wins
Dunlop on his way to a record five wins Picture: Tony Goldsmith

Isle of Man TT winner Michael Dunlop capped off a superb week at the 2012 International Southern 100 with two more victories, another race record and another lap record.


Dunlop dominated the meeting and went into the Thursday’s Solo Championship Race as favourite, a billing he lived up to by taking his 1000cc Honda to a convincing win.


He was unbeatable during the nine-lap contest, setting a new lap record for the 4.25-mile Billown course of 2 minutes 14.702 seconds, an average of 113.584mph.


The Ballymoney man came home five seconds clear of Guy Martin, whose Tyco Suzuki teammate was a further four seconds back in 3rd.


TT winners Ryan Farquhar and Ian Lougher, both on Kawasakis, finished 4th and 5th, with Billown newcomers Dean Harrison and Jamie Hamilton home 6th and 7th.


The championship win was Dunlop’s 5th victory of the meeting having taken the flag in the eight-lap 600cc race earlier in the day.


With a best lap of 108.574mph, Dunlop led home Manxman Cummins by 1.856s, with Jamie Coward 3rd. Harrison and Lougher were 4th and 5th, with Ivan Lintin, a star of the 2012 TT, 6th.


The day also saw Hamilton put in a stunning ride to take victory in the combined 250/650cc race, beating his KMR Kawasaki teammate and mentor Farquhar by almost 6 seconds. Newcomer Hamilton also recorded a new SuperTwin lap record of 2:29.229, an average of 102.527mph.


Honda 250cc-mounted Chris Palmer was the second home, 2 seconds ahead of Dungannon’s Farquhar, with Russ Mountford, on the 650cc Kawasaki, 4th.


There was also debut joy in the Sidecar Championship, but it wasn’t the outfit of Billown newcomer Tim Reeves which took the flag.


After dominating practice and the first Sidecar race, Reeves and passenger Dan Sayle were expected to have a strong showing in the championship race. However, mechanical problems ended their challenge on lap two.


What unfolded over the remaining six laps was a thrilling race which saw Tom and Ben Birchall, also new to the event, take a seven second win over the outfit of Ian and Carl Bell, with Greg Lambert and Dicky Gayle in 3rd.

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