Crash.Net RR News

Hillier reflects on 'amazing' TT win and 131mph lap

12 June 2013

Bournemouth's James Hillier made his mark at this year's Isle of Man TT races as the Quattro Plant Kawasaki rider claimed his maiden victory and finished fourth in the blue riband Senior race.

Hillier won the Lightweight race on the final day of the festival to take his first victory around the Mountain Course before challenging for a rostrum place in the Senior later in the day, eventually finishing missing out by fractions of a second to Bruce Anstey.

The English rider also set his fastest ever lap of the TT course on the final lap of the Senior on the ZX-10R at 131.386mph to sign off on a high.

“It's an amazing feeling to win and even though we felt the Lightweight race was our best chance of success, it's definitely going to take a while to sink in,” he said.

“It was hard work with the hot weather but I loved every minute of it and the bike worked beautifully.

“I had a bit of drama on the opening lap when I pulled two tear-offs off instead of one but I pressed on really hard and everything worked as planned.

“We were still unsure about our pit stop strategy and 15 minutes before the race we were going to stop at the end of the second but I'm glad we changed our minds,” he added.

“I was paranoid on the last lap that something was going to go wrong as things seemed to be going too well but once I saw 'P1 +25s', I was able to roll off a bit over the Mountain and bring the bike home.

“I'm over the moon and being a TT winner is an unbelievable feeling.”

Hillier produced the best ride of his TT career in the Senior as he fought for the final place of the rostrum, producing two laps in excess of 131mph to join the list of fastest ever TT riders.

“I was on a massive high but gave it my all again in the Senior and to circulate on the roads with John [McGuinness] for four and a half laps was very, very special,” he said.

“I had to keep pinching myself that he was only a few metres in front as he really is the maestro around here and whilst I wanted to come away with a 130mph+ lap, to record two in excess of 131mph is unreal.

“It's been quite simply a brilliant week and I'd like to thank everyone connected with the Quattro Plant Kawasaki team.

“They've given me superb machinery and the level of support has been fantastic.”

Hillier finished seventh in the Superbike TT, sixth in the Superstock event and fifth and sixth in both Supersport races.