2017 Ulster GP: Harrison wins second Superbike outing

Picture: Derek Wilson

Dean Harrison claimed his first Ulster GP win when he won the second Superbike race by 0.106s from Dan Kneen and Conor Cummins after yet another superb race on the Dundrod circuit.

“Dan came by me just before Wheeler’s and we were nearly off the track so when we went into the hairpin, I had to have a go,” Harrison said afterwards. “He was in the middle of the track and he came across on me a bit so it was a bit tight and we ran a bit wide but got the job done. It was scary stuff at times but I’m over the moon to have won the last Superbike race and taken the outright lap record earlier in the day.”

It was Peter Hickman who led at the end of lap one from Kneen, Harrison, Cummins and Michael Dunlop with Bruce Anstey outside the top twenty but Hickman’s hopes of a fourth win disappeared in a cloud of smoke shortly afterwards at Leathemstown.

Anstey went as well and it was Harrison who led at the end of the second lap albeit by just 0.095s from Kneen with Cummins and Dunlop in hot pursuit. Derek Sheils was three seconds further back in fifth but four seconds clear of David Johnson.

At half race distance, Harrison still led and he’d extended his advantage to 0.427s with Cummins now up into second having overhauled Kneen. Dunlop was a further half second back in fourth as Sheils and Johnson held station.

Kneen moved back up to second on the fourth lap at the Windmill and with a great run he went up the inside of Harrison at Tournagrough to take over at the front for the first time.

The leading quartet were still only covered by a second after four laps and although Harrison went back into the lead at the beginning of the fifth lap, Kneen took over once more through Deer’s Leap with Cummins following him past Harrison further round the lap.

Heading into the sixth and final lap and Kneen led Cummins by 0.289s and although the latter got a great run along the Flying Kilo, he almost went on to the grass and had to back off slightly. It looked like it was a three-horse race as Dunlop slipped back slightly.

Harrison went back into the lead but Kneen slipstreamed him on the run through Jordan’s Cross and up to Wheelers only for the Yorkshire rider to take over again at the hairpin.

The duo ran wide which gave Cummins a sniff but it was the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki of Harrison that got the win by 0.106s from Kneen and Cummins, Dunlop a further second behind in fourth.

Sheils and Johnson had good rides into fifth and sixth respectively as Jamie Coward, Sam West, Ivan Lintin and Michael Sweeney rounded out the top ten.

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