Peter Hickman posted the fastest time in the Superbike class on Thursday evening during practice for the Isle of Man TT with a lap of 132.81mph, a new personal best lap for the Smiths Racing BMW rider.

The overnight rain and morning mist had long gone by the time the session got underway at 6.20pm and clear skies and sunshine were again the order of the day although damp patches remained on the exit of Ramsey Hairpin, the Nook and Governor’s Bridge.

Hickman was first to complete a lap at 131.113mph and he’d opened up a large gap on the road over Michael Rutter, who lapped at 127.475mph on the Bathams BMW.

Dean Harrison (Silicone Kawasaki) and Michael Dunlop (Tyco BMW) were both over the 130mph mark though, lapping at 130.612mph and 130.606mph respectively. Australian rider Josh Brookes also had a good opening lap on the Norton at 129.174mph.

Hickman and Rutter both elected to go straight through with Harrison and Dunlop pulling in to change machines. Hickman was taking full advantage of the clear road in front him with his second lap - an excellent 132.81mph - an unofficial personal best and the second fastest lap of the week to date.

Rutter was a retirement though, stopping at Cruickshanks although he did manage to get back to register another qualifying lap.

Harrison was also over 130mph second time around - this time on his Superstock mount, while Conor Cummins again impressed on his Padgett’s Honda Superbike at 131.18mph.

David Johnson (129.63) and James Hillier (128.06) also had strong second laps as did newcomer Davey Todd, who set his best lap of the week at 123.995mph. Fellow newcomer David Jackson was also above 120mph for the first time but Adam Lyon retired at Cronk-y-Voddy.

As the session wore on, speeds were reduced due to an incident involving Chris Petty at St Ninian’s, which left debris in the road.

Hickman went to the top of the Superstock times briefly with a lap of 128.38mph. However, this was ultimately bettered by David Johnson who posted a lap of 129.20mph.

Late laps on the Superbikes came from Cummins (130.59mph) and Dunlop (130.959mph) and although not many of the top group went out on their Supersport machines, Ivan Lintin put in the quickest lap of the night at 123.22mph, which put him ahead of Jamie Coward (Prez Racing Yamaha), who lapped at 123.208mph and Lee Johnston (123.02mph).

Yorkshireman Petty was taken by ambulance to Nobles Hospital where he was reported to have sustained a fractured ankle.

In the Sidecar class, Ben and Tom Birchall led the way with the fastest lap of the evening at 116.554mph.

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