The Birchall brothers got their Isle Of Man TT campaign off to a flying start with a record-breaking victory in the first sidecar race of the world-famous event.
The Mansfield duo, Ben and Tom, scorched to a dominant, untroubled success around the 37.3-mile mountain road circuit, their fifth in total at the TT. They won the Sure F2 sidecar race and also set a new outright lap record of 117.119mph, shattering the existing one they themselves set last year.
An amazed Ben said: “We didn’t really go out to try and do that fast a lap. It just happened. We always ride as hard as we can and whatever we get is good.”
Tom added: “The conditions over the mountain were a bit tricky, especially on the last lap when it started to drizzle with rain. But Ben judged it perfectly, and we were able to bring the bike home safely. You never know what the TT course will throw at you and it’s just an awesome event to take part in. It’s an honour and a privilege to be here.”
Bad weather had turned practice week into a washout. But on the day before the race, they set the fastest practice lap of 116.675mph. The Birchalls, who are backed by Mitchells of Mansfield, thanked all their supporters and sponsors and hope to repeat their triumph in the second TT sidecar race, which takes place on Friday.