Dunlop joins Dan Cooper in 2017 Lightweight Classic TT squad

Picture: Impact Images

Turner Racing will make a two-pronged attack in this year’s Dunlop Lightweight Classic TT Race at the 2017 Classic TT Races presented by Bennetts, having secured the services of Michael Dunlop and Dan Cooper for the four-lap race, with the duo sure to be among the pre-race favourites.

Owned by Roger Turner, the team will supply a pair of TZ250 Yamahas for Dunlop and Cooper with the latter back with the team for a second year and hoping for another strong result around the Mountain Course.

Dunlop will be making his debut on a 250cc machine at the event but he does have considerable pedigree on the Lightweight machines - none more so than in 2008 when he took a highly emotional and, arguably, career defining victory at the North West 200, his first ‘international’ win. His first appearance on the 37.73-mile course also came on a two-stroke machine when he took the win in the 2006 Ultra-Lightweight Newcomers Manx Grand Prix.

It means the 15-times Isle of Man TT race winner and current outright lap record holder will compete in all four Classic TT races having also been confirmed for Black Eagle Racing in the Bennetts Senior and Sure Junior Classic TT Races and Team Classic Suzuki in the Motorsport Merchandise Superbike Classic TT Race.

Cooper campaigned the 2008-spec TZ Yamaha for Turner Racing at last year’s Classic TT although problems during practice week meant he was unable to make the start grid. With a year’s experience under their belt though, the team are confident of giving a good account of themselves this time around and providing the two riders with a great chance of success.

Like Dunlop, 2015 TT Privateers Champion Cooper has a vast amount of two-stroke experience having won the 2006 125cc British Championship on the KRP Honda.

“We are very excited about this years Classic TT and are delighted to be working with undoubtedly the best TT rider around at the moment in Michael Dunlop. Michael has a lot of two-stroke experience and is excited about riding in the Lightweight Race. We are working hard to make sure we put a bike under him capable of winning the race. With Dan there is a lot of unfinished business after last years disappointment, but we have put that bad luck behind us and will be aiming to have two bikes on the podium,” said team owner Roger Turner.

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