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With almost 110 years of racing at the Isle of Man TT, it’s no surprise that there’s a wealth of records that have been set. Check out exclusive guide with all your need-to-know stats…
Ever since the Isle of Man TT got underway in 1907 milestones have continually been achieved, none more so than in the outright lap record.
Bob McIntyre recorded the first 100mph lap in 1957 with John Williams (1976) and Steve Hislop (1989) breaking the 110mph and 120mph barriers respectively.
It was John McGuinness who had the honour of breaking the 130mph barrier in 2007 and although speeds have levelled out somewhat in recent years, an impressive 18 riders are now members of the ‘130mph Club’ although there were no new members in 2016, the first time this had happened since 2008. With the exception of 2014 and 2016, McGuinness has held the outright lap record every year since 2004.
Dunlop breaks 133mph barrier
However, 2016 saw some sensational speeds by Michael Dunlop as he became the first man to break the 133mph barrier and also the sub-17m barrier. The Ulsterman recorded no less than four 133mph+ laps, two in the Superbike and two in the Senior, almost lapping at 134mph in the latter as the Mountain Course narrowly missed out on becoming the fastest road race circuit in the world currently in use.
Ian Hutchinson also lapped at more than 133mph and whilst Dunlop set three out of the six best ever sector times, Hutchinson took two of them and in the Superstock class too as opposed to the Superbike class.
The ideal lap – combing the six best sector times ever set – now stands at 16m48.656s (134.662 mph) with Dunlop’s outright lap record just 5.273 adrift.
|1.||Michael Dunlop||1000 BMW||2016S||16m53.929s||133.962|
|2.||Ian Hutchinson||1000 Kawasaki||2016S||17m00.384s||133.115|
|3.||John McGuinness||1000 Honda||2015S||17m03.567s||132.701|
|4.||Peter Hickman||1000 BMW||2016Su||17m05.390s||132.465|
|5.||James Hillier||1000 Kawasaki||2015S||17m05.779s||132.414|
|6.||Guy Martin||1000 BMW||2015S||17m05.907s||132.398|
|7.||Bruce Anstey||1000 Honda||2014Su||17m06.682s||132.298|
|8.||Conor Cummins||1000 Honda||2015S||17m10.822s||131.797|
|9.||David Johnson||1000 BMW||2015S||17m12.165s||131.595|
|10.||Dean Harrison||1000 Kawasaki||2016S||17m15.570s||131.163|
|11.||Michael Rutter||1000 BMW||2016St||17m15.924s||131.118|
|12.||Gary Johnson||1000 Kawasaki||2016S||17m17.291s||130.945|
|13.||William Dunlop||1000 Superbike||2014S||17m18.016s||130.853|
|14.||Lee Johnston||1000 BMW||2015St||17m18.037s||130.851|
|15.||Cameron Donald||1000 Honda||2013Su||17m19.007s||130.729|
|16.||Steve Plater||1000 Honda||2009S||17m20.91s||130.490|
|17.||Keith Amor||1000 Honda||2011S||17m23.41s||130.177|
|18.||Dan Kneen||1000 Honda||2015S||17m24.827s||130.000|
|19.||Ryan Farquhar||1000 Kawasaki||2010St||17m25.77s||129.883|
|20.||Josh Brookes||1000 Yamaha||2014S||17m25.968s||129.859|
|21.||Steve Mercer||1000 Honda||2016Su||17m30.299s||129.323|
|22.||Martin Jessopp||1000 BMW||2016S||17m30.936s||129.245|
|23.||Dan Stewart||1000 Honda||2013Su||17m32.299s||129.077|
|24.||Adrian Archibald||1000 Suzuki||2009Su||17m33.88s||128.993|
|25.||Daniel Hegarty||1000 Kawasaki||2016Su||17m37.597s||128.431|
Su = Supbike, S = Senior, St = Superstock
It was back in 2004 when Guy Martin became the first newcomer at the TT to break the 120mph barrier, the Lincolnshire rider smashing the previous best mark of 116.65mph with his lap of 122.10mph.
Since then, an additional 37 newcomers have broken the 120mph barrier and Martin’s lap stood until 2007 when British Champion Steve Plater raised the bar to 125.808mph. Like Martin, Plater scored a best result of seventh in his debut year.
Plater’s mark stood for an impressive six years with the late Simon Andrews just coming short in his first island appearance in 2011. It was left to Josh Brookes to take over the accolade in 2013 with the Tyco Suzuki rider lapping at 127.726mph in the opening Superbike race. Inclement weather in practice meant the Australian had limited track time and he would probably have gone quicker in the Senior had it not been for mechanical trouble on the opening lap.
Brooks vs Hickman
Many thought Brookes’ lap would stand for some time but it only lasted 12 months before another British Superbike Championship regular, Peter Hickman, took over at the top. Like Plater and Brookes, Hickman’s research and dedication to learning the 37 and ¾-mile course left no stone unturned and he posted a best lap in excess of 129mph and he’s since become the fourth fastest rider of all time with a 132mph+ lap in 2016.
Michael Booth was the fastest newcomer at TT2016 with his best lap of 122.597mph seeing him just fail to break into the top ten in 11th overall.
|1.||Peter Hickman||1000 BMW||129.104||2014|
|2.||Josh Brookes||1000 Suzuki||127.726||2013|
|3.||Steve Plater||1000 Yamaha||125.808||2007|
|4.||Simon Andrews||1000 BMW||125.134||2011|
|5.||Keith Amor||1000 Honda||124.856||2007|
|6.||Horst Saiger||1000 Kawasaki||123.846||2013|
|7.||David Johnson||1000 Honda||123.838||2010|
|8.||Martin Jessopp||1000 BMW||123.474||2014|
|9.||Derek McGee||1000 Honda||122.898||2015|
|10.||Gary Johnson||1000 Yamaha||122.859||2007|
The late David Jefferies set the first ever 125mph+ lap of the Mountain Course back in 2000 with John McGuinness joining him in 2002. Since then, the latter has been the dominant force of the TT races and it’s little surprise to see him at the top of this particular chart.
With Guy Martin absent in 2016, Bruce Anstey has now moved up to second overall, becoming the third rider to post more than 100 racing laps in excess of 125mph.
Bruce Anstey breaking records…
Ian Hutchinson is up to fourth and is now only three behind Martin. That’s no mean feat given how many years Hutchinson lost due to injury although he’s only one ahead of Michael Dunlop. His total is equally impressive given he didn’t set his first 125mph+ lap until 2009.
With 125mph+ laps now being recorded regularly in the Supersport class as well as in the three 1000cc races, the top riders are now lapping in excess of 125mph as many as twenty times during the course of race week.
|1.||John McGuinness (2002 – 16)||143|
|2.||Bruce Anstey (2004 – 16)||111|
|3.||Guy Martin (2005 – 15)||101|
|4.||Ian Hutchinson (2006 – 16)||98|
|5.||Michael Dunlop (2009 – 16)||97|
|6.||James Hillier (2009 – 16)||76|
|7.||Gary Johnson (2008 – 16)||74|
|8.||Conor Cummins (2007 – 16)||69|
|9.||Michael Rutter (2007 – 16)||67|
|10.||William Dunlop (2010 – 16)||58|
It’s now almost 30 years since the first 120mph lap was recorded with Steve Hislop going in the record books forever with his feats of 1989. Since then, a whopping 199 riders have lapped at more than 120mph, 12 new riders achieving this feat in 2016, and now, the likes of John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey can lap at more than 120mph in every racing lap they complete, even when time is added for pitting for fuel.
McGuinness has comfortably set more 120mph+ laps than any other rider with 253 being recorded over a 17-year period. Anstey is next up but over 40 laps behind although he’s achieved his figure in three less years than McGuinness.
Ian Lougher, who returned to the TT in 2016 after a three-year absence, still occupies third overall with Guy Martin close behind in fourth. There’s quite a gap to fifth placed Ian Hutchinson although, as mentioned above, his tally would be a lot higher had it not been for missing a number of years.
Again, Michael Dunlop’s placing in sixth is impressive due to his considerably shorter career and the same applies to James Hillier who moved up two places after TT 2016.
|1.||John McGuinness (1999 – 16)||253|
|2.||Bruce Anstey (2002 – 16)||209|
|3.||Ian Lougher (1998 – 16)||184|
|4.||Guy Martin (2004 – 15)||178|
|5.||Ian Hutchinson (2004 – 16)||163|
|6.||Michael Dunlop (2008 – 16)||155|
|7.||James Hillier (2009 – 16)||146|
|8.||Conor Cummins (2006 – 16)||141|
|9.||Gary Johnson (2007 – 16)||138|
|10.||Adrian Archibald (1999 – 12)||126|
|=||Michael Rutter (1997 – 2016)||126|
When Joey Dunlop took his 26th and last TT win in 2000, many thought that total would never be beaten, especially as it was 12 more than anyone else had at the time and that figure was greater going back to those riders that were still competing.
However, records are there to be broken and the form of John McGuinness has allowed him to continually close the gap and his two wins in 2015 mean he’s now just three behind Dunlop and with every chance of joining him on 26 wins. However, he failed to win a race in 2016 – for the first time since 2010 – and with the performances of Michael Dunlop and Ian Hutchinson in the 1000cc races, arguably the class McGuinness has the best chance of winning, he may be stuck on 23 wins for a while longer.
Dunlop, Grant and Haslam battling it out in 1980…
Dunlop and McGuinness are comfortably clear of anyone else with the great Mike Hailwood next up on 14, the fact his last win was as far back as 1979 showing just how good he was. He’s now been joined by Hutchinson though with the Bingley rider taking a hat-trick of victories for the second successive year in 2016.
That puts them one ahead of Michael Dunlop whose brace in 2016 moved him up to fifth overall on the all-time list, the Ulsterman now having 13 wins. Still only 27, Dunlop has years ahead of him so, arguably, has the best chance of one day taking over at the top of the pile.
There are now three riders on 11 wins – Steve Hislop, Phillip McCallen and Bruce Anstey – with the last named moving up from ten wins in 2016, after taking his first victory in the TT Zero class.
|1.||Joey Dunlop||26 (1977 – 2000)|
|2.||John McGuinness||23 (1999 – 2015)|
|3.||Mike Hailwood||14 (1961 – 1979)|
|=||Ian Hutchinson||14 (2007 – 2016)|
|5.||Michael Dunlop||13 (2009 – 2016)|
|6.||Steve Hislop||11 (1987 – 1994)|
|=||Phillip McCallen||11 (1992 – 1997)|
|=||Bruce Anstey||11 (2002 – 2016)|
|9.||Stanley Woods||10 (1923 – 1939)|
|=||Giacomo Agostini||10 (1966 – 1972)|
|=||Ian Lougher||10 (1990 – 2009)|
|12.||Charlie Williams||9 (1973 – 1980)|
|=||David Jefferies||9 (1999 – 2002)|
|14.||Phil Read||8 (1961 – 1977)|
|=||Chas Mortimer||8 (1970 – 1978)|
|=||Jim Moodie||8 (1993 – 2002)|
Joey Dunlop may top the chart for the most wins but when it comes to podiums, John McGuinness is the leader with 46 podiums having been taken over a 19-year period, an average of more than two a year.
Dunlop’s 40 podiums were taken over a longer period of 23 years although third place Bruce Anstey’s total of 36 podiums is perhaps more impressive than both Dunlop and McGuinness given that his total is over the shorter period of 16 years.
Ian Lougher took podiums across the classes so it’s no surprise to see him in fourth overall and both Ian Hutchinson and Michael Dunlop moved up this particular leaderboard after the 2016 races. Hutchinson has taken a podium in all ten of his last races, a phenomenal achievement, whilst Charlie Williams’ seventh place is particularly impressive given he retired more than three decades ago.
Guy Martin makes in onto the list with the Lincolnshire rider being the only rider with 16 podiums or more not to have taken a win, a statistic he doesn’t need reminding of! Only time will tell if he returns to chase that elusive win.
|1.||John McGuinness||46 (1997 – 2016)|
|2.||Joey Dunlop||40 (1977 – 2000)|
|3.||Bruce Anstey||36 (2000 – 2016)|
|4.||Ian Lougher||29 (1989 – 2009)|
|5.||Ian Hutchinson||25 (2006 – 2016)|
|6.||Michael Dunlop||22 (2009 – 2016)|
|7.||Charlie Williams||20 (1971 – 1984)|
|8.||Mike Hailwood||19 (1958 – 1979)|
|=||Steve Hislop||19 (1987 – 1994)|
|=||Phillip McCallen||19 (1991 – 1999)|
|=||Tony Rutter||19 (1972 – 1985)|
|12.||Chas Mortimer||17 (1969 – 1984)|
|13.||Mick Grant||16 (1972 – 1985)|
|=||Guy Martin||16 (2005 – 2015)|
Statistical information provided by Phil Wain.
It was way back in 1977 that the first 100mph lap was recorded by a sidecar team, Dick Greasley and Mick Skeels having that particular honour and almost 20 years later, the magical 110mph barrier was topped.
Dave Molyneux/Peter Hill took that particular honour in 1996 and since then, the outright lap record remained in the hands of the local contingent right up until 2016 when Ben and Tom Birchall finally reclaimed it for England.
Molyneux held the record from 1996 until 2007 when Nick Crowe and Daniel Sayle set a lap of 116.667mph which looked like it could well last forever as no-one got near it over the next seven years. However, that all changed in 2015 when Molyneux and Ben Binns and the Birchall’s went head to head throughout the second race.
It was the Manx pairing of Molyneux and Binns that just shaded it in a thrilling final lap only for the Birchall’s to go quicker still in the first race of 2016 although they retired on the final lap. However, they bounced back to win the second with more 116mph+ laps and with John Holden also lapping in excess of 116mph, four crews have now achieved the feat. The most telling aspect of the fastest lap chart is how many times Sayle appears, further adding weight to the argument he’s the greatest TT sidecar passenger ever.
Peter Founds/Jevan Walmsley, Steve and Matty Ramsden and Tony Baker/Fiona Baker-Milligan became the three newest members of the 110mph Club during the 2016 meeting.
|1.||Ben Birchall/ Tom Birchall||600 Honda||2016||19m22.982s||116.798|
|2.||Dave Molyneux/ Ben Binns||600 Suzuki||2015||19m23.056s||116.785|
|3.||Nick Crowe/ Daniel Sayle||600 Honda||2007||19m24.24s||116.667|
|4.||John Holden/ Daniel Sayle||600 Suzuki||2015||19m30.520s||116.041|
|5.||Klaus Klaffenbock/ Daniel Sayle||600 Honda||2011||19m43.19s||114.798|
|6.||Conrad Harrison/ Mike Aylott||600 Honda||2014||19m44.472s||114.674|
|7.||Tim Reeves/ Daniel Sayle||600 Honda||2013||19m45.158s||114.608|
|8.||Ian Bell/ Carl Bell||600 Yamaha||2016||19m50.872s||114.058|
|9.||Phil Dongworth/ Gary Partridge||600 Honda||2009||19m51.01s||114.045|
|10.||Simon Neary/ Stuart Bond||600 Suzuki||2009||20m02.31s||112.972|
When it comes to outright winners in the sidecar class, there’s no doubt Dave Molyneux is head and shoulders above everyone else and his tally of 17 wins – third overall behind Joey Dunlop and John McGuinness – is phenomenal given the fact he’s only had two opportunities a year to add to his total. He’s also missed a number of years when on duty elsewhere so it’s reasonable to suggest he could have topped 20 by now if it wasn’t for that.
Rob Fisher is the next best with 10 wins, the Cumbrian being Molyneux’s main rival throughout the 1990s and early 2000s whilst joint third remains Siegfried Schauzu, Mick Boddice and Dave Saville, the latter’s victories all coming in the Formula Two class.
The list below also includes some of the greatest sidecar exponents ever with World Champions Jock Taylor, Klaus Enders, Ben Birchall, Rolf Steinhausen, Max Deubel, Walter Schneider and Klaus Klaffenbock all featuring.
|1.||Dave Molyneux||17 (1989 – 2014)|
|2.||Rob Fisher||10 (1994 – 2002)|
|3.||Siegfried Schauzu||9 (1967 – 1975)|
|=||Mick Boddice||9 (1983 – 1991)|
|=||Dave Saville||9 (1985 – 1990)|
|6.||Nick Crowe||5 (2005 – 2008)|
|7.||Klaus Enders||4 (1969 – 1973)|
|=||Jock Taylor||4 (1980 – 1982)|
|=||Trevor Ireson||4 (1979 – 1983)|
|=||Ben Birchall||4 (2013 – 2016)|
|10.||Klaus Klaffenbock||3 (2010 – 2011)|
|=||Max Deubel||3 (1961 – 1965)|
|=||Walter Schneider||3 (1955 – 1959)|
|=||Rolf Steinhausen||3 (1975 – 1978)|
Sidecar passengers are a unique breed but there can be no denying they’re as important as the driver when it comes to winning races, especially at the TT. Their knowledge of the course and knowing what the driver is doing, and where, is paramount to their success and whilst some of the passengers below all achieved their success with one driver – Chas Birks and Benga Johansson, for example – others haven’t which further proves their credentials.
Rick Long’s wins came with two drivers, Fisher (6) and Molyneux (2) whilst Sayle has been victorious with three, Molyneux (4), Klaffenbock (3) and Tim Reeves (1).
|1.||Rick Long||8 (1997 – 2008)|
|=||Daniel Sayle||8 (2004 – 2013)|
|3.||Wolfgang Kalauch||7 (1970 – 1978)|
|4.||Chas Birks||6 (1983 – 1989)|
|5.||Benga Johansson||4 (1980 – 1982)|
|=||Horst Schneider||4 (1967 – 1970)|
|=||Tom Birchall||4 (2013 – 2016)|
|8.||Ralf Engelhardt||3 (1969 – 1973)|
|=||Emil Horner||3 (1961 – 1965)|
|=||Darren Hope||3 (2005 – 2005)|
|=||Clive Pollington||3 (1979 – 1980)|
|=||Hans Strauss||3 (1955 – 1959)|
|=||Donny Williams||3 (1982 – 1987)|
As expected, Molyneux is again the leading driver when it comes to TT podiums and a phenomenal statistic is that out of the 32 TT Races he’s finished, he’s been on the podium in 29 of them. That also places him joint fourth overall with only McGuinness, Dunlop and Anstey ahead of him, another remarkable feat given he only gets two races a year.
The Manxman is still as quick as ever and although he’s now been competing at the TT for 30 years, you can guarantee he still has rostrum finishes in him. At present, it looks like his tally will never be beaten.
Next up is Mick Boddice whose podium places came over a 17-year period and he has a sizeable gap over third placed John Holden who overhauled Siggi Schauzu, a leading light when the World Championship races were still held on the island, during the 2016 meeting.
|1.||Dave Molyneux||29 (1989 – 2015)|
|2.||Mick Boddice||20 (1978 – 1995)|
|3.||John Holden||15 (2005 – 2016)|
|4.||Siegfried Schauzu||14 (1967 – 1976)|
|5.||Rob Fisher||13 (1994 – 2002)|
|=||Dave Saville||13 (1979 – 1993)|
|7.||Dick Greasley||11 (1975 – 1984)|
|=||Steve Norbury||11 (2000 – 2007)|
|=||Nick Croew||11 (1998 – 2008)|
|10.||Roy Hanks||10 (1981 – 1998)|
|11.||Conrad Harrison||9 (2010 – 2015)|
|12.||Kenny Howles||7 (1987 – 1998)|
|=||Jock Taylor||7 (1978 – 1982|
|14.||Geoff Bell||6 (1990 – 2000)|
|=||Lowry Burton||6 (1984 – 1988)|
|=||Rolf Steinhausen||6 (1973 – 1978)|
|=||Ben Birchall||6 (2012 – 2016)|
It’s tight at the top for the highest number of podium finishes by a sidecar passenger with both Wolfgang Kalauch and Daniel Sayle tied on 14 although the latter is still obviously competing and has every chance of taking the top spot outright.
German Kalauch partnered some of the sport’s greats and his podiums came with five different drivers – Helmut Fath, Klaus Enders, Rolf Steinhausen, Siegfried Schauzu and Georg Auerbacher, the first three all World Champions.
Sayle’s podiums have also come with five different drivers – Molyneux, Klaus Klaffenbock, John Holden, Tim Reeves and Greg Lambert – and, like Kalauch, cover a 12-year period.
Meanwhile, the third and fourth placed passengers – Andy Winkle and Chas Birks – achieved their podiums with the same drivers, Mick Boddice and John Holden respectively. Sayle and Winkle are, of course, still competing so have great chance of topping the chart outright.
|1.||Wolfgang Kalauch||14 (1966 – 1978)|
|=||Daniel Sayle||14 (2003 – 2015)|
|3.||Andrew Winkle||12 (2006 – 2016)|
|4.||Chas Birks||10 (1978 – 1989)|
|=||Dave Wells||10 (1990 – 2006)|
|6.||Rick Long||9 (1997 – 2007|
|7.||Peter Hill||8 (1992 – 1996)|
|=||Darren Hope||8 (2003 – 2006)|
|=||Mike Aylott||8 (2011 – 2015)|
|=||Patrick Farrance||8 (2008 – 2016)|
|11.||Scott Parnell||6 (2004 – 2007)|
|=||Steve Pointer||6 (198 – 1996)|
|=||Horst Schneider||6 (1967 – 1970)|
|=||Tom Birchall||6 (2012 – 2016|
Information provided by Phil Wain.
Now you’ve learned all about the important records and stats from the Isle of Man TT, why not try our quiz..