Ian Hutchinson was named Man of the Meeting at this year’s Ulster Grand Prix after four wins. He broke the lap record and in doing so became the world’s fastest road racer, beating Bruce Anstey’s six year record when he completed a 134.089mph lap.
Win number one came in the opening race of the day – Superstock – where he beat Michael Dunlop and Dan Kneen. Backmarkers came into play in the final few laps and Hutchinson crossed the line with a two tenth advantage over Dunlop. Behind Kneen was Dean Harrison who finished just ahead of Conor Cummins. Last minute Lee Johnston replacement Gary Johnson came home in sixth place with Derek Sheils seventh, Steve Mercer eighth and Jamie Coward ninth. Bruce Anstey had an understated start to the day finishing in tenth place and 42 seconds off the race winner.
Anstey took victory in the first of two Supersport races, beating Hutchinson by just eight tenths. Cummins was third – securing a podium after fourth in the first race – ahead of Harrison and Kneen. William Dunlop finished in sixth ahead of Peter Hickman – who retired from the first race – and Derek McGee. Christian Elkin was ninth and Dan Cooper was tenth. There was a brief shower before the start of the race but conditions quickly improved. Anstey pulled away at the front but was reeled in by the end.
Following their battle in Thursday’s Lightweight race, Neil Kernohan was once again victorious over Davy Morgan. The gap was 17 seconds this time after a close hundredths of a second win on Thursday. Darryl Tweed finished in third ahead of Stephen Morrison and Paul Gartland. In the Ultralightweight class Elkin took a commanding 20 seconds win over Sam Wilson, with Paul Robinson in third. Gary Dunlop finished in fourth ahead of Nigel Moore.
Hutchinson took victory in the feature Ulster Grand Prix superbike race by just two tenths of a second over Anstey. Michael Dunlop had to settle for third ahead of Cummins and Harrison. Hickman suffered another disappointment retiring from the race after running in third place.
In the second Supersport race it was William Dunlop who led most of the way but lost out in the end, just before the Quarries. Hutchinson took his third win of the day by just a tenth of a second. Hickman finished in third, half a second down, ahead of Anstey, Cummins, Harrison and Johnson. Elkin was eighth, Cooper ninth and Paul Jordan. Patricia Fernandez finished in 27th place and became the fastest ever woman at a road race with a 118.261mph lap.
At the North West 200 Cooper got caught up in Ryan Farquhar’s accident, leaving him injured and not riding to his full potential at the Isle of Man TT. At the Ulster Grand Prix he finally took his first International victory, winning the Supertwins race from Sheils and James Cowton. It was another close race like at Armoy, with the top six separated by just two seconds. Jordan and Adam McLean were fourth and fifth respectively.
In the final Superbike race of the day it was once again between Hutchinson and Anstey – thrilling the fans on the RCV – with Michael Dunlop once again third. The race was red flagged following a highside by Dominic Herbertson – rider was OK – after the riders had completed six laps. Hutchinson completed a 134mph lap on his final tour, becoming the world’s fastest road racer. Cummins finished fourth ahead of Harrison, Kneen, Hickman, Johnson, Mercer and Sheils.