Guy Martin enjoyed a fine end to his first season with the Relentless Suzuki by TAS Racing team with victory in the Ulster Grand Prix.
Martin led from start to finish in the six-lap encounter, where tyre choice was an important part of the team's strategy in inclement weather conditions, eventually taking the win by three seconds.
Victory in the race came after the team had missed out on victory in the opening superbike race, despite Martin taking the chequered flag as the first bike on the road.
Instead, Bruce Anstey took advantage of an archaic 'corrected time' ruling from the second group on the road to take the win, leaving Martin to settle for a second place finish to go with his earlier second place in the Superstock race.
“I'm a happy camper now I've got that win,” he said. “After the first Superbike race where I was just concentrating on trying to win on the road, I knew what I had to do in the last race and watch my board. It's not ideal to take the chequered flag and lose; by 'eck it's bizarre if I'm honest, but those are the rules. I just couldn't shake Keith off in the first race and it let Bruce gain time as he had clear track from the front of the second group.
“The other races were good enough… we weren't far off in the Superstock race either. No one remembers a loser but everyone remembers the last winner of the year at the internationals, so a good job all round from the team. Proper order… I'm well happy.”
Team manager Philip Neill said he was pleased to see Martin secure victory in the race, especially given the events of the earlier outing which he described as 'bizarre'.
“I have to admit I'm relieved that's over,” he said. “After a successful qualifying and having had Thursday's Superbike race virtually in the bag before the red flag; then losing out in today's first Superbike race on corrected time was a bit hard to take on-board. Yes we were licking our wounds and feeling a tad hard done by, but that's no disrespect to Bruce or the Padgetts' team. They just made the best of the bizarre rules that we normally see at national road races but really shouldn't come into play at an international event.
“For Guy to then produce such a thrilling and dominant display in the final Superbike race is testament to his guts and determination and the victory was justice in our eyes. Both he and Michael Dunlop were also in a class of their own in the Superstock race, and although Guy was visibly faster through the corners, Michael had a bit of an advantage on the straights – but what a race. It was a difficult day with the weather but the organisers did a good job and I'm sure it will make great viewing on TV.”