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Michael Dunlop targets successful Southern 100

'As long as the bike is handling well then we should be up there. Guy [Martin] will probably give me a push and Ryan [Farquhar] shouldn't be far away either' - Michael Dunlop
Isle of Man TT winner Michael Dunlop is preparing to defend his Southern 100 titles as racing for the 2012 meeting on the Billown course gets underway this evening.

Dunlop, who won the second Supersport race at the TT last month, broke the outright lap record in the feature Solo Championship race on his way to victory at the event last year.

The 23-year-old also tasted success in the 600cc class and could take some stopping at the 4.25-mile circuit near Castletown.

“I enjoy the Southern 100 and I go really well around there,” said Dunlop.

“I became the only rider to break into the 2m 15s bracket last year and I managed it when I had a gap over the rest of them and should have been easing off.

“As long as the bike is handling well then we should be up there,” he added.

“Guy [Martin] will probably give me a push and Ryan [Farquhar] shouldn't be far away either.”

Dunlop threw down the gauntlet as he posted the fastest lap during Monday evening's first practice session with a speed of 109.573mph on his Hunts Motorcycles/McAdoo Honda Fireblade.

Tyco Suzuki's Martin was second quickest at 108.112mph followed by Farquhar on his KMR Kawasaki at 107.035mph.

Veteran Ian Lougher topped the Supersport times on his ILR Kawasaki.

Lougher lapped at 105.403mph to take the top spot from Martin (104.679mph), Dunlop (104.644mph) and Conor Cummins (104.201mph).

Manx rider Cummins is returning to action after being forced to miss the Isle of Man TT as a result of a wrist injury he sustained in a crash at the North West 200, when he was wiped out by Gary Johnson's wayward machine.

Final practice continues this evening, followed by the opening race of the 2012 programme – the Senior Solo Founders race – with Dunlop pitched into battle with Martin, Farquhar and Cummins.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Michael Dunlop on his way to victory in the Supersport race at the Isle of Man TT
David Johnson will make his debut at the Classic TT in 2014
Danny Webb in action at the 2014 Isle of Man TT
Connor Behan in action at the 2014 Isle of Man TT
Lee Johnston in action at the 2014 Isle of Man TT
William Dunlop will ride a rotary Norton at the Classic TT
Dean Harrison will ride for Black Eagle Racing at the 2015 Classic TT
Lee Johnston will ride for Black Eagle Racing at the 2015 Classic TT
Gary Johnson leads Alastair Seeley and Bruce Anstey at the North West 200
Cameron Donald will again ride for Norton at the Isle of Man TT in 2015
Mugen riders John McGuinness and Bruce Anstey at the 2014 Isle of Man TT
Robbin Harms and Isle of Man TT rider liaison officer Richard Quayle on the TT circuit
William and Michael Dunlop in action at the North West 200
Michael Dunlop at the 2014 Isle of Man TT
Michael Dunlop with Milwaukee Yamaha team manager Mick Shanley
John McGuinness and Conor Cummins back with Honda for TT 2015
Derek McGee will make his TT debut in 2015 after signing for Wilson Craig Racing
Glenn Irwin and Ben Wilson with NW200 Event Director Mervyn Whyte and Rider Liaison officer Steve Plater

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