John McGuinness laid down a marker for his Classic TT rivals by topping Tuesday evening’s 500cc qualifying session. The night proved a successful one for the Paton riders, with McGuinness, Ian Lougher and Ryan Farquhar locking out the top three ahead of Jamie Hamilton on the Black Eagle Racing MV.
The evening session was delayed slightly to allow the last of the newcomers to complete their sighting laps but once it got underway, McGuinness got straight down to business with a 109.846mph opening lap. Lougher had been quickest to Glen Helen but he eventually came in six seconds slower at 109.282mph with Farquhar a further six seconds down at 108.767mph. Hamilton, standing in for Dean Harrison, was a fine fourth ahead of Michael Dunlop and Dan Cooper while Michael Rutter made his first appearance of the week, clocking the eleventh fastest time.
The 350cc session was dominated by Alan Oversby who was the only rider to top 100mph on his ’72 Honda, lapping just three seconds off the lap record. Conor Behan and William Dunlop were separated by just 1.166s in second and third although most riders only got one clear lap in following an oil spillage at Ballaugh which brought out the yellow flags. Alex Sinclair was involved in an accident which brought out the yellows and was subsequently taken by Airmed to Nobles with an arm injury.
After failing to get a trouble-free lap in on Monday night, many were eager to see what Bruce Anstey could do in the Formula 1/Formula 2 session and the Kiwi was quickest through the Sulby speed trap at 164.5mph. Over the full course, Anstey registered the third fastest time behind 2013 winner Michael Dunlop (118.772mph) with Russ Mountford second at 116.534mph. The F2 class was topped by James Cowton with the session also seeing Colin Croft crash at Ramsey Hairpin, escaping injury.