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Southern 100: Hot Harrison has edge over Martin and Dunlop

RC Express Kawasaki star Dean Harrison takes the spoils in the opening Superbike race at the Southern 100 on the Isle of Man ahead of Guy Martin and Michael Dunlop
Dean Harrison continued his terrific run of form as the young Bradford rider clinched his maiden success in the Superbike class at the Southern 100 on Tuesday evening.

The RC Express Kawasaki rider took the lead from Tyco Suzuki's Guy Martin on the first of seven laps in the Corlett's Trophies 1000cc/600cc race and pulled away to win by 5.3 seconds from the Lincolnshire star.

Michael Dunlop, who dominated at the Isle of Man TT in June, was third on the BMW Motorrad S1000RR at the 4.25-mile Billown course near Castletown.

Dunlop made a poor start and was fifth on the opening lap, but managed to close the gap to Martin. The pair were separated by only 0.4 seconds at the line, with the Suzuki rider holding on to the runner-up spot.

Race winner Harrison, who won the Lightweight TT to secure his first victory on the Mountain Course last month, said: “I took Guy coming out of Church Bends; I got a really good run out of Church and got my head down from there. I rode as hard and as smooth as I could. I've done my job now so everyone's happy.”

Martin revealed he almost came a cropper in the early stages as he attempted to hang on to the rear of Harrison's ZX-10R.

“I was nearly off on the second lap; Dean came past and I was coming out of Church Bends and I thought, 'right I'll stay with him and see where he's quick and where he's slow, but my God coming out of there I was nearly on my ear,” he said.

“Tomorrow's another day and we'll change a few bits on the bike tonight and a few bits in the morning.”

Rostrum finisher Dunlop, who like Martin is back in action for the first time since the TT, added: “The bike's quick but the engine just doesn't suit here the way the bike works,” he said. “We're just developing things and we're going back and checking things over.”

Isle of Man rider Dan Kneen finished fourth on the Cookstown B.E. Racing Suzuki ahead of Russ Mountford and Ivan Lintin.

Ramsey's Conor Cummins was the first 600cc rider across the line on the Jackson Racing Honda, finishing 10th overall.

Alistair Haworth and Ulsterman Paul Robinson were the respective Supersport 400 and 125cc race winners.

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