Classic TT: Anstey says Padgetts 250 'fastest I've ever been on'

Bruce Anstey on the Padgetts Honda RS250 during practice at the Classic TT on Wednesday.
Bruce Anstey on the Padgetts Honda RS250 during practice at the Classic TT on Wednesday.

Flying Kiwi Bruce Anstey underpinned his current run of hot form as he topped the times on Wednesday in the Superbike and Lightweight practice sessions at the Classic TT.

Anstey unofficially set the fastest ever 250cc lap around the Mountain Course at 118.812mph on the Padgetts Honda (19m 03.218s), which was inside his own lap record of 118.744mph from last year’s inaugural running of the race.

Michael Dunlop (Team Classic Suzuki) and Dan Hegarty (Suzuki)prepare to leave the start line on Glencrutchery Road in the Classic TT Superbike session.

Michael Dunlop (Team Classic Suzuki) and Dan Hegarty (Suzuki)prepare to leave the start line on Glencrutchery Road in the Classic TT Superbike session.

The 48-year-old, who won the blue riband Superbike race on the Padgetts Honda RC213V-S at the Ulster Grand Prix earlier this month, posted the lap from a standing start.

Anstey also appeared to be on course for a lap of 120mph on his flying lap before encountering slower traffic second time around, setting a speed of 118.44mph.

Dan Sayle (Steelcote Solutions Yamaha) was second quickest at 115.56mph followed by Michael Rutter (Red Fox Grinta Racing Ducati) at 112.87mph and Ivan Lintin on the John Chapman Honda (112.69mph).

Tuesday’s pacesetter Ian Lougher clocked 112.46mph on the LayLaw Yamaha.

Josh Brookes lapped at 118.5mph on the Rotary Norton.

Josh Brookes lapped at 118.5mph on the Rotary Norton.

In the Motorsport Merchandise Classic TT Superbike session, Anstey again headed the times on the Padgetts Yamaha YZR500 with the fastest lap of the week so far at 124.88mph, which he achieved from a standing start.

“Clive has worked all winter to get it sorted and it’s the fastest 250 I’ve ever been on – I’m looking forward to the race now,” he said.

“The 500 is working really well too and I said to Clive that it’s the best it has ever been, so it’s all looking good so far.”

Michael Dunlop, who has won the Superbike race for the past two years, retired at Ballacraine on his opening lap for the second night in a row on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69.

Dunlop’s team-mate Lee Johnston was reported as another retirement on the opening lap at Kirk Michael.

Bradford's Dean Harrison (123.288mph) on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki and Aussie David Johnson (121.86mph) on the Team York Suzuki were also on the pace.

Gary Johnson (Team York Suzuki), Greenall Kawasaki duo Horst Saiger and Derek Sheils, plus Dan Kneen (Mistral Kawasaki) all posted their fastest laps of the week.

Josh Brookes managed a solid lap on the Rotary Norton (118.586mph), which was the eighth fastest speed in the class on the night.

Ballymoney man Dunlop made it back to the Grandstand after his earlier retirement and managed to get out on his Turner Racing Yamaha TZ250 before the end of the combined Superbike/Lightweight session, lapping at 112.13mph.

In the Bennetts Senior class, Aussie Brookes (Team Winfield Paton) was the clear leader on the night with the two fastest laps: his quickest at 109.509mph was over 40 seconds faster than William Dunlop (105.858mph) on the Davies Motorsport Honda.

In the concurrent Junior class, Alan Oversby on the Davies Motorsport Honda set the first 100mph Junior lap of the meeting to top the qualifying board from Lee Johnston (99.612mph) on the Black Eagle Racing MV Agusta.

Ballymoney's Darryl Tweed was fastest at 112.85mph in the Manx Grand Prix Newcomers A class on his Triumph.

Newcomer Steve Tobin was reported to have sustained an ankle injury after an accident at Ballig Bridge while Jonathan Perry on his Senior machine suffered a leg injury following a crash at the 26th milestone.

Newcomer David Glover was reported to be unhurt after an incident at the Gooseneck.