TT 2017: Historic sidecar win for Birchall brothers

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Ben and Tom Birchall made history in the opening Sure Sidecar race at this year’s Isle of Man TT as they shattered the three-wheel lap record on their way to a dominant victory.

It was a lights to flag affair for the determined Mansfield pair who set off the line first and didn’t look back. Their lead stood at 12 seconds by the end of the opening lap and it’d double 37.73 miles later as they crossed the line to take their fifth TT win.

As well as leading from flag to flag, the duo clocked up a new lap record for the sidecar category with a speed of 117.12mph, leaving his rivals with no answer.
John Holden and Lee Cain finished second with Dave Molyneux and Dan Sayle third, however it was a challenging race for the Moly/Sayle pairing after Sayle took a bang to the ribs on the opening lap.


After a tap from his partner, Molyneux slowed slightly but the pair were still able to get third place. It was later confirmed the Manxman had two suspected broken ribs from the knock. Alan Founds and Jake Lowther finished fourth, ahead of Tim Reeves and Mark Wilkes with Peter Founds and Jevan Walmsley rounding out the top six.


  1. Birchall/Birchall 
  2. Holden/Cain +25.699
  3. Molyneux/Sayle +18.717 (from Holden/Cain)
  4. Founds/Lowther +5.653
  5. Reeves/Wilkes +14.006
  6. Founds/Walmsley +25.256
  7. Harrison/White +1:48.480
  8. Baker/Baker-Holden +42.224
  9. Bennett/Vasseur +20.150
  10. Lockey/Sayers +11.041

Pick up a copy of our special edition McGuinness: Ordinary bloke. Extraordinary Racer. This special from MCN, celebrates the career of one of the sport’s best-loved road racers. Affectionately known as McPint, John’s career has wowed and entertained bike racing fans for more than 20 years. Buy it here. 

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Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

Former sports reporter covering British Superbikes, World Superbikes and road racing