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Road Racer of the Year 2015 - 7th: Michael Dunlop

You place Michael Dunlop seventh in our Road Racer of the Year poll...
7th – Michael Dunlop
Average poll score out of ten: 6
Team: Milwaukee Yamaha/Buildbase BMW/MD Racing
NW200 wins: 0
Podiums: 1
Isle of Man TT wins: 0
Podiums: 1
Ulster Grand Prix wins: 0
Podiums: 2
Macau Grand Prix: N/A

Michael Dunlop's red-hot winning streak at the Isle of Man TT came to an end in 2015, with the 26-year-old controversially splitting from Milwaukee Yamaha during TT practice week and renewing his ties with the Buildbase BMW team.

Dunlop had previously made history with back-to-back four-timers in 2013 and 2014 to extend his tally of TT wins to 11, but the Northern Ireland rider left the island empty-handed in June after a tumultuous fortnight.

Despite limited practice time on the Buildbase BMW, Dunlop was holding third place in the RST Superbike TT when he crashed out on the final lap after tangling with a slower rider, blowing his chance of a certain rostrum.

The battered and bruised Ulsterman regrouped and put up a valiant fight to push Ian Hutchinson all the way in the Superstock TT, but in the end he had to settle for the runner-up spot behind the rejuvenated Bingley Bullet.

Dunlop though, refused to bow out without a fight and served a timely reminder of his class around the Mountain Course as he became the second fastest rider ever with a lap of 132.515mph, which he set on his way to fifth place in the blue riband Senior. However, he did return to the top step at the legendary course after winning a dramatic Formula 1 Classic TT in September from Bruce Anstey.

At the North West 200, Dunlop's best finish was second in the opening Supersport race and fourth in the Superstock event.

He was in the thick of the action at the Ulster Grand Prix at Dundrod, but an international win at one of the 'big three' road races eluded him as he finished third in the Superstock race and completed the podium places in the second Superbike race behind Peter Hickman and Conor Cummins.

Dunlop did seal a Superbike victory at the Southern 100 but crashed out of the feature Solo Championship event as he prepared to challenge eventual winner Guy Martin.

At the Irish National meetings, he won the showpiece 'Race of Legends' race on his home patch at Armoy for the fifth year in succession and clinched a Superbike double in the final event of the season at Killalane near Dublin.

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About the vote:
Thousands of votes were cast for the 2015 Crash.net Road Racer of the Year poll, where viewers awarded a shortlist of this season's most impressive riders with a mark out of ten.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Michael Dunlop on the Hawk Racing Buildbase BMW at the Isle of Man TT
Guy Martin on the Honda Fireblade at the Isle of Man TT.
Dean Harrison, Dan Kneen and Michael Dunlop at the Southern 100.
Derek Sheils in action at the Walderstown road races.
Michael Dunlop at the Classic TT
Derek Sheils on the Cookstown B.E. Racing Suzuki at the Skerries 100.
Dean Harrison on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki in the Senior TT.
Peter Hickman in the Senior TT on the Smiths BMW.
Michael Dunlop on the Bennetts Suzuki in the Senior TT.
Bruce Anstey on his way to victory in the TT Zero race.
Guy Martin on the Honda Racing Superbike.
Alan Bonner was killed in an incident at the 33rd Milestone.
Jochem van den Hoek.
Michael Rutter took victory in the Lightweight TT on the Italian Paton.
Dan Kneen celebrates with his team after sealing his maiden Isle of Man TT rostrum in the Superstock race.
Ian Hutchinson celebrates his Superstock victory.
Ian Hutchinson on his way to victory in the Superstock TT on the Tyco BMW.
Davey Lambert in the RST Superbike race.

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