Ryan Farquhar completed a hat trick of victories at the 2011 Manx Grand Prix Festival with a thrilling win in the Classic Racer Classic Superbike race on Friday. The Northern Irishman had already enjoyed success in the Okells Brewery 500cc Senior Classic and the Motorsport Merchandise 350cc Junior Classic earlier in the week, and edged out Mark Buckley to take his total victories at the MGP to nine.
Michael Dunlop was a threat as well and even led the race at Ramsey, 0.67s ahead of Farquhar with Buckley close behind in third. Unfortunately for Dunlop, his John Sims' XR69 stopped at the Verendah, dropping him out of contention.
Buckley seized the advantage on lap two after Farquhar lost time over the mountain during the second lap but neither rider could stretch away from the other, meaning Buckley had a slender lead of just 1.7s going into the final lap.
Sadly, mechanical failure would determine the outcome of the race with Buckley forced to stop Kerrowmoar, leaving the path clear for Farquhar to take the victory, just under five minutes ahead of John Barton who enjoyed a close battle with Mick Godfrey, the 997 Kawasaki rider five seconds further back.
Meanwhile, Roy Richardson claimed victory in the Junior Post Classic after a commanding performance on his TZ Yamaha. Chris Palmer came in 42 seconds adrift despite setting the pace in qualifying while Stuart Garton was ten seconds further back in third.
Earlier in the day, 2011 Isle of Man TT Champion John McGuinness lapped the mountain course on the Honda Legends Fireblade, the same machine that powered him to victory in this year's Dainese Superbike and PokerStars Senior TT.
“There were a lot of people out there including marshals and medics and it made me appreciate how much goes into organising the event”, he added. “It was really special to get the most famous track in the world to myself for half an hour. I just want to go again now.”
“I was getting a lot of pit boards with things like seventeen and P1, which was great. I got my head down in a few places and rode the bike quite hard. I've had so many experiences here – both ups and downs – but I love the place. That feeling never goes away. I watched Hutchy (Ian Hutchinson) go round last year and I was really jealous and thought I definitely want to do that so I was delighted to be invited by the organisers.”