Last week MCN picked the brains of the most influential and knowledgeable people in the paddock to nominate what is the best Superbike TT of the last 25 years. The votes have flooded in with Joey Dunlop’s final win in 2000 taking an early lead ahead of the thrilling 2008 race that Guy Martin ‘should’ have won.
Vote here for the best superstock TT race, or read on for details of the races in our shortlist.
This week we’re taking a trip down memory lane and focusing on Superstock before moving on to Supersport, Lightweight, Sidecar and the prestigious Senior TT.
- Related: You can still vote for your favourite superbike race of all time here
Our panel of experts are made up of the greatest living TT racer John McGuinness, esteemed team boss Clive Padgett, 11 time winner Phillip McCallen, TT boss Paul Phillips, renowned TT photographer Stephen Davison along with the 2019 Senior TT winner Dean Harrison – all of which initially put forward the 2010 race as their favourite.
Then it’s your turn to get involved as you’ll be able to vote on what you think is the greatest Superstock TT of the last 25 years with the winning race being featured in detail in MCN’s special TT supplement on 24 June.
MCN readers who vote will be in the running to win two copies of Ride On The Edge 2 - official Isle of Man TT Races game.
Stephen Davison – Photographer and Journalist
2010 SUPERSTOCK TT
"Hutchy gave it everything, Farquar was in tears"
It was a record breaking battle between Hutchy and Ryan Farquhar in the Superstock TT. Hutchy had won the stocker TT race 12 months earlier on the Padgett’s Honda but his practice week pace left him lagging behind Farquhar and Michael Dunlop. Going into the third race of TT2010, Hutchy knew he would have to dig deep if he was to claim victory.
Aboard his ZX10R KMR Kawasaki race bike, Farquhar blitzed into a 6.7 second lead over arch rival Dunlop on the opening lap. A new lap record on the second circuit saw Farquhar extend his lead to 8.8 seconds with Hutchy making his move into second.
The Padgett’s squad cancelled out the Northern Irishman’s deficit with a faster pit stop that put Hutchy in the lead at the start of lap three. Farquhar got his nose in front again and enjoyed a 5.5 second advantage as the pair began their fourth and final lap.
Hutchinson gave it everything on that last circuit, posting the first ever 130mph TT lap on a stocker. The new 130.741mph record secured a 1.32 second victory and left a devastated Farquhar in tears in the winner’s enclosure.
John McGuinness – 23 time TT winner
2002 Production TT
"DJ made it look so effortless"
DJ won it and he averaged 122.6mph which was mighty impressive at the time. To put that in perspective DJ won Superbike race too where he averaging 123.3mph. It was the start of the production bikes being quite similar to the Superbikes, but ultimately the brakes weren’t as good, they didn’t have as much power and they’re on treaded tyres.
I was sixth in that race on a 954 Fireblade. But for me that race represented the next generation. For DJ to do that time just didn’t seem possible on a bike which had just had its headlights taken off. I can remember speaking to DJ that year asking him how that lap time was even possible and he as just beaming. It was effortless for him, he just took in in his stride and in his head he wasn’t pushing it, he was just out there having a ride. He’d done the trebble, trebble – three wins, three consecutive years 1990, 200 and 2002. No one was beating him.
Clive Padgett – Milenco by Padgetts Motorcycles
2009 Superstock TT
"Going into the last lap it was so close"
"Hutchy and Guy had been separated by a second all race long and going into the last lap we were just 0.4 seconds ahead of Guy. But Hutchy was able to up the ante to do a 129.7mph on the final lap, which was when everyone was questioning whether a 130mph lap on a stocker was possible.
We had decent pit boards around the circuit so Hutchy knew what he needed to do, but he was always exceptionally quick over the mountain. The way the Honda worked really suited the mountain and Hutchy has always been good there. It was such a close race and it was the first Superstock win for Dunlop tyres which was also a big thing.
What is incredible to me is that Hutchy was so close to doing a 130mph lap on a stocker on a four lap old treaded rode road."
2018 Superstock TT
"The amount of backmarkers Michael caught was insane"
We had the weather on our side for the full two weeks in 2018 and Peter Hickman broke the lap record on the Superstock bike in that race which was special but Michael Dunlop only lost out on the win by under five seconds. But Michael lost at least five seconds over the mountain on the final lap and I know that because I was right with him over the mountain on that lap. The amount of backmarkers Michael caught in bad places and got held up was insane. I finished third in the race and I wasn’t a million miles away. For most people watching that race and looking at the times they would never know about the backmarkers so it’s good to be able to tell the story…
Paul Phillips – TT Business Development Manager
2013 Superstock race
"A special lap that won Michael Dunlop the race"
Michael Dunlop won the race, he actually won four that year, two Supersport and the Superbike and it was what seemed to me to be the turning point in him becoming king of the mountain.
Gary Johnson started ten seconds behind Michael, he was able to see him on the road and ended up leading for the majority of it. But what was special about it was the last lap, it was the fourth lap on the tyre and Michael set a 131mph lap on a Superstock Honda which was incredible. To put that into perspective the only people to go faster than that on a Honda in the last seven years have been McGuinness, Anstey, Conor and Hutchy and they were all on Superbikes. In fact the only person to lap faster than that in the 2019 Supertock race was the winner Peter Hickman on a 2019 BMW. It was a special lap that won him that race.
1998 Production TT
"Honda’s 100th and the first 120mph production lap"
This was more than just the race on the track, it was what it signified. I have a long history with the Fireblade having been one of the main testers back in 1991 and 1992 and then in 1998 I was managing the Honda Britain team having broken my back. We had Michael Rutter and Jim Moodie on the bikes. This was also when the Yamaha R1 had come out, so it was a important for Honda to be able to beat them with their new bike.
It turned out to be a big year for Honda because it was their 40th year at the TT and Moodie’s win was their 100th TT victory. In winning he also set the first 120mph lap on a production bike.
Everyone that votes will be entered into a free prize draw to win one of two copies of Ride On The Edge 2 - official Isle of Man TT Races game.
An excellent way of filling time during lock down, the brand new game TT Isle of Man - Ride On The Edge 2 - the official game of the Isle of Man TT Races is available for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
Featuring technical improvements and reengineered motorcycle physics, Ride On The Edge 2 takes TT racing to new heights two years on from the first instalment.
New riders and machinery sit alongside an enhanced career mode where you start your journey as a road racing amateur. Choose the teams and races you want to contest, customise your bike and plan your calendar as you manage your career and work your way to the top to become Senior TT Champion.
TT Isle of Man – Ride On The Edge 2 also features a new open-world area that’s the perfect proving ground to adjust your bike’s set-up whilst attempting a variety of additional challenges including pursuits and time attack races.
Having rebuilt the motorcycle physics from the ground up, NACON and KT Racing have created an ultra-realistic racing simulator with fully-integrated gyroscopic effects giving more precise steering, hair-raising speed wobbles and a braking and suspension feel that responds to all the lumps and bumps of the iconic TT Mountain Course.
How to enter
Simply submit your vote and you’ll be entered into the prize draw. Good luck!
*T&Cs: This prize draw closes at midnight May 12, 2020. This competition is open to UK residents aged 16 and over. There are two prizes each consisting of one copy of Ride On The Edge 2 - official Isle of Man TT Races game. Winner will receive a voucher to be redeemed on their choice of platform - PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The winners will be the first two names drawn at random from all valid entries after the closing date and notified by email and has 30 to respond before an alternative winner is chosen. This prize may be offered in a limited number of other promotions. No purchase is necessary. To enter for free visit www.motorcyclenews.com/greatest-TT-races/. Full terms and conditions can be found here.