Following the announcement of a mouth-watering rider line-up for the 2014 Isle of Man TT Races, organisers have now confirmed the start numbers for the 1000cc solo classes.
The 2014 races will once again see the top twenty riders off the line seeded, which this year will feature established race winners, regular front runners and exciting new talent.
John McGuinness will once again lead the field off from the number 1 position, having taken the third starting spot in 2013 to honour Joey Dunlop‘s first TT win for Honda. The Morecambe Missile won races in both 2011 and 2012 leading on the road, and will be hoping he can use the clear road as an advantage.
Following McGuinness will be James Hillier, who spent much of the 2013 Senior TT shadowing the 20-times TT winner, lapping in an impressive 131mph to become the fifth fastest rider ever around the Mountain Course.
Ian Hutchinson then follows ten seconds later in what is expected to be a hero’s welcome. ‘Hutchy’ became the only man to have ever won five TTs in a week in 2010, but since then has been through hell and back with injuries denying him a return to the Mountain.
Pursuing the eight-time TT winner will be fan favourite, Guy Martin. Heading off from fourth, in his fourth year with Tyco Suzuki, Martin will be hoping that 2014 will finally be the year that sees him take the top step of the podium.
Rounding out the top five starting positions is Bruce Anstey, the second fastest rider ever, who will have his head set on taking his tenth TT victory.
All eyes will then be on sixth place starter, Michael Dunlop. Dunlop took an impressive four wins in 2013, but having departed the Honda squad in favour of BMW Motorrad/Hawk Racing, it will be interesting to see if he can continue his run of form into 2014.
Gary Johnson starts in seventh, while William Dunlop heads off down Bray Hill from eighth. Michael Rutter and Conor Cummins complete the top ten, with Cummins hoping to make the most of his factory Honda ride and take his first TT victory.
Other notable mentions in the first twenty include Josh Brookes, who became the fastest ever newcomer in 2013, who will start from 14th, while Cameron Donald will set off from 19th, looking to replicate Steve Hislop’s historic 1992 victory on a Norton.
Outside the top 20, starting positions will be awarded by qualifying times, although ones to look out for include Ryan Farquhar with the number 77 and newcomers Martin Jessopp, Peter Hickman and Danny Webb, who take numbers 40, 60 and 66 respectively.
Isle of Man TT Starting Numbers 1-20
1 – John McGuinness
2 – James Hillier
3 – Ian Hutchinson
4 – Guy Martin
5 – Bruce Anstey
6 – Michael Dunlop
7 – Gary Johnson
8 – William Dunlop
9 – Michael Rutter
10 – Conor Cummins
11 – Dan Stewart
12 – Dean Harrison
13 – Lee Johnston
14 – Josh Brookes
15 – Steve Mercer
16 – David Johnson
17 – Dan Kneen
18 – Simon Andrews
19 – Cameron Donald
20 – Ben Wylie.