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Michael Dunlop clinches 24th TT win with Supertwins triumph as history beckons

Tim Keeton/Impact Images
Michael Dunlop, MD Racing, Paton SR-1, 2023 TT, Isle of Man TT, Supertwins TT, action [credit: Tim Keeton/Impact Images]

Michael Dunlop bounced back to winning ways in the first Supertwins TT race of the week, collecting his third victory of the 2023 Isle of Man TT thus far and with it status of becoming the second most successful rider in TT history.

After seeing his hopes of a hat-trick of wins from three starts scuppered by Peter Hickman in the earlier Superstock TT Race 1, Dunlop nevertheless began the Supertwins TT as hot favourite to build on what is shaping up to be a record-breaking week for the Ulsterman.

And so it proved, Dunlop easing home almost 27secs clear after three laps for his third win of the event, not to mention a 24th career success that puts him within striking distance of reaching the all-time record of 26 this week


An enthralling race-long dice for second went the way of Mike Browne, who scored a huge personal best at the TT on the Burrows Engineering Paton for his maiden podium, just +2.2secs ahead of Jamie Coward.

Hickman came home a lonely fourth, with Josh Brookes equalling his personal best result at the TT with a competitive fifth at the flag.

Dunlop makes hay while the evening sun shines

Getting underway in the glorious golden glow of another beautiful evening on the Manx Island, Dunlop would likely have recognised that only a mistake by himself or a problem with his trusty Paton could scupper his bid for victory in the Supertwins class.

Indeed, with Peter Hickman's challenge always likely to be dictated by his new, barely tested Yamaha R7 package and Dean Harrison opting against a Supertwins entry this year, the path had seemingly been cleared for Dunlop to make it a hat-trick for 2023.

Not that fate hasn't conspired in the past, Dunlop seeing a potential win go by the wayside in 2022 when technical issues curtailed a thrilling duel between himself and Hickman.

On this occasion, however, Dunlop was not to be denied, swiftly opening up a five-second lead over the chasing pack on the first run down to Glen Helen. It was a margin that would incrementally grow over the ensuing sectors to hand Dunlop a comfortable +14.3s margin by the time he'd come back around for his mandatory pit-stop.

From here Dunlop put ambitions of chasing lap records to the back of his mind, notably easing the intensity of his pace in order to prioritise the win.

With no late charge forthcoming, Dunlop come across Cronk ny Mona and down to the finish line to take victory, in so doing moving clear of John McGuinness on the all-time list, leaving him just two short of levelling up with uncle Joey Dunlop's 26 TT wins.

Mike Browne wins tug-of-war for maiden podium

If Dunlop's route to victory was fairly unruffled, then the battle for second place was anything but as Browne and Coward emerged as the surprise gladiators clashing swords for the position.


With his one and only TT podium coming in the preceding Lightweight TT class in 2019, Coward - riding the KTS Racing by Steadplan Kawasaki Z650 - has form in this category, which he demonstrated by quickly establishing himself as Dunlop's closest, albeit very distant, rival.

However, he'd soon come under increasing pressure from Browne who, in only his third TT appearance, quickly proved his eye-catching qualifying practice pace was no fluke to slot himself into third straight away.

With Browne underdog status demonstrated by his comparatively low seed in the running order, it meant there was a long wait between himself and Coward's sector splits, which only served to ramp up the tension.

Coward held firm until the start of the final lap when Browne's chipping away at the margin finally brought the reward of a second place promotion.


Coward fought back, sneaking ahead by just 0.011s by Ballaugh, but come the next split at Ramsey, Browne was back into a second place he'd protect to the flag, beating his rival by just +2.2secs for his first-ever visit to the TT podium enclosure.

Almost half-a-minute behind Coward, Hickman salvaged a solid fourth place finish on his PHR Performance Yamaha R7.

A winner in the Supertwins TT class in 2022 aboard a Paton, the switch to Yamaha for 2023 was hampered by a precious lack of testing and a DNF in the preceding North West 200. Only setting off for a lap on the R7 in practice directly before the race, Hickman nonetheless kept it ticking over to reach the flag.

In doing so he just got the better of FHO Racing BSB team-mate Josh Brookes, who notched up a fifth place finish on the Dafabet Kawasaki to equal his best-ever result at the TT.

After just missing the podium in 2022, Pierre-Yves Bian scored another strong result on his Paton S1-R in sixth, heading off Dominic Herbertson on his Kawasaki in seventh and Michael Rutter in eighth on the Bathams Yamaha R7.

With high-profile non-finishers including Brian McCormack, Stefano Bonetti and Francesco Curinga, it paved the way for Baz Furber (DC Auto Repairs Kawasaki) and Rob Hodson (SMT Kawasaki) to complete the top ten.

2023 Isle of Man TT - Supertwins TT Race 1 FULL RESULTS

2023 Isle of Man TT - Supertwins Race 1 Results [Tuesday 06-06-23]
1Michael DunlopMD RacingPaton S1-R
2Mike BrowneBurrows Engineering RKPaton S1-R
3Jamie CowardKTS Racing SteadplanKawasaki ER-6F
4Peter HickmanPHR PerformanceYamaha R7
5Josh BrookesDafabet RacingKawasaki Z650
6Pierre Yves BianVAS EnginePaton S1-R
7Dominic HerbertsonJohn M Paterson Kawasaki Z650
8Michael RutterBathams RacingYamaha R7
9Baz FurberDC Auto Repairs NewtownYamaha MT-07
10Rob HodsonSMT/KH CommercialsKawasakI Z650
11Michael EvansRea Racing Dyno CentreAprilia RS 660
12Michal DokoupilRocknetAprilia RS 660
13Michael RussellFraser Evans TyreAprilia RS 660
14Chris MooreSilverstar ServicesKawasaki Z650
15Martin MorrisObsession EngineeringAprilia RS 660
16Paul Potchy WilliamsGolden Site SolutionsKawasaki Z650
17Dave HewsonObsession EngineeringAprilia RS 660
18Jonathan GoetschyGoetschy RacingAprilia RS 660
19Miroslav SlobodaLaki RT53Yamaha R7
20Paul CassidyIsland Fuels LtdKawasaki Z650
21Pete MurrayArizona Speed EngineeringKawasaki Ninja 650
22Gareth ArnoldGareth ArnoldAprilia RS 660
23James CringleAGR MotorsportsKawasaki ER-6F
24Andy HornbyBlack Eagle RacingPaton S1-R
25Tom WeedenKawasaki ER-6F
26David Madsen-MygdalRJP RacingKawasaki Z650
27Masayuki YamanakaTeam ILR / Frog VehicleKawasaki ER-6F
28Jack PetrieAM TilingKawasaki ER-6F
29Raul Torras MartinezOptimark Road RacingAprilia RS 660
30David BrookBrook MotorsportAprilia RS 660
31Paul JordanPrez Racing by ProsperKawasaki Z650
DNFBrian McCormackGlobal RobotsAprilia RS 660
DNFXavier DenisPerformanX RacingKawasaki Z650
DNFKevin BarsbyCowton Racing/Sally NunnKawasaki ER-6F
DNFVinny BrennanVinny BrennanKawasaki Z650
DNFChris SzczypekOxman CarpentrySuzuki SV650
DNFStefano BonettiTeam ILR / Frog VehiclePaton S1-R
DNFFrancesco CuringaTeam ILR / Frog VehiclePaton S1-R
DNFJames ChawkeCarl Roberts/Emmjess RacingKawasaki Z650
DNFJonathan PerryJonathan Parry RacingKawasaki Ninja 650
DNSRhys HardistyKawasaki Z650
DNSJulian TrummerYamaha R7

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