Ryan Farquhar enjoyed another successful trip to the Isle of Man last week when he won the Senior Classic Manx Grand Prix for the second consecutive year.
Riding Roger Winfield’s twin cylinder Paton, Farquhar took the lead towards the end of the first lap and went on to win by 20.4seconds in the shortened race for his fourth Manx GP victory. He also finished third in the Junior Classic race two days later on board Winfield’s 350cc Drixton Honda.
With mixed weather conditions on the Island, the Senior Classic race was cut to three laps and Ryan eased his way into the race, mindful of the wet roads and damp patches under the trees. Second in the early stages, an opening lap of 103.572mph, the fastest of the race, saw him take over at the head of the field and he led Gary Johnson by 11 seconds at the end of the first lap. He continued to stretch his advantage over the next two laps and he was able to ease back on the final run over the Mountain, crossing the line over 20 seconds clear of Alan Oversby.
With more rain and cloud on Wednesday, the Junior Classic race was also delayed and eventually got underway almost 5 hours later than scheduled. Again cut from 4 laps to 3, an opening lap of 97.342mph saw Ryan slot in to second place behind the pace setting Roy Richardson but handling problems meant he was unable to challenge further and he had to nurse the machine home. Although he went quicker on lap 2, Paul Coward overhauled him on the final lap and Ryan had to settle for third at the chequered flag, his second podium of the week.
Speaking later, a pleased Ryan said: "Conditions in the Senior race were really tricky and it was the first time I’ve ridden around the Mountain Course when the roads have been properly wet so I just took it nice and steady to begin with and gradually eased my way into the race. It was a shame Gary went out early on the MV as it would have been a close race between us but once ahead, I was able to ride to my signals. The roads began to dry as the race wore on so I was able to enjoy it a lot more.
"The 350cc rcae started well but half way around the first lap, I started experiencing major handling problems. We think the bike bottomed out at the Bottom of Barregarrow and with a full tank of fuel, it caused the tank to move. It jammed against the top of the fork yokes and that meant that I had barely any steering. It was particularly bad at some of the slower corners and I nearly fell off at Parliament Square and Governor’s Bridge so, after that, I just plugged away and brought the bike home for a good third.
"I’ve got to say a big thank you to Roger Winfield and his team for all their hard work and I’m really pleased for them that we got two podiums - it was nice to be able to repay them with some good results. I also did a bit of marshalling at Ballaugh Bridge on the final race day to try and help the organisers as much as I could so, all in all, its been a good week."