TT 2018: Dan Kneen dies in qualifying crash

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Dan Kneen has passed away after an incident during this evening’s Isle of Man TT session.

The Tyco BMW rider crashed at Churchtown on the opening lap of this evening’s Superbike/Superstock/Supersport session. The session was immediately red flagged, but the 30-year-old died at the scene.

Local man Kneen made his debut on the mountain course at the Manx Grand Prix in 2008, winning an unprecedented three races – the Junior, Newcomers C and Ultralightweight MGP races.

2017 saw Kneen clinch his first TT podium in the Superstock race, setting his fastest ever lap of the course with a 130.347mph.

His efforts saw him achieve his goal of securing a factory contract, joining the Tyco BMW team for last year’s Ulster Grand Prix, where rostrum finishes on both Superbike and Superstock machinery would see him join the Northern Irish squad for 2018.

On just the second night of practice, Kneen bettered his fastest ever lap of the TT course with a 132.258mph to place third in Tuesday’s qualifying session.

A popular figure around the TT paddock, Kneen would always bear a smile on his face that will be sorely missed by many. 

A statement from TT organisers read:  

“ACU Events Ltd regrets to confirm that Dan Kneen, 30, from Onchan in the Isle of Man died this evening following injuries sustained during the Superbike qualifying session on the Isle of Man.

“Dan had an accident at Churchtown on the first lap of the session and died at the scene of the incident.

“Dan made his mountain course debut at the Manx Grand Prix in 2008 and won an unprecedented three races – the Junior, the Newcomers C and the Ultra Lightweight MGP Races. 

“He achieved his first TT podium in last year’s Superstock Race, finishing third in the Superstock TT Race. He has a fastest official lap of 130.347mph which he set in last year’s Superstock Race and recorded a lap of 132.258mph (17:06.994) in last night’s Superbike qualifying session. 

“ACU Events Ltd wishes to pass on their deepest sympathy to Dan's partner Leanne, his family and his many friends in the road racing community and beyond.”

MCN joins the wider racing community in sending our deepest condolences to Dan’s partner, Leanne, his family and friends.

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Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

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