By James Lloyd
Veteran Welsh motorbike racer, Ian Lougher, says it’s good to be back at the top end of the leaderboard after an impressive start to the Classic TT practice week.
“It’s been going well”, said Lougher. “I’ve done three laps on the 250 and it’s been brilliant so far. It’s a beautiful bike and such a jump from the older bike.
“It’s a beautiful thing to ride and I’m really enjoying it so far. It’s nice to be up at the sharp end, of course”.
Cardiff born Lougher topped the timesheets during Monday and Tuesday nights’ practice on board Laylaw Racing’s 250cc Yamaha. On the opening night, Lougher clocked a time of 19 minutes 58 seconds around the 37.73 mile Mountain Course. And on Tuesday evening the Welshman continued to impress, shaving six seconds off his previous effort.
“Tuesday nights’ lap would have been around 116, I reckon”, added the 10 time TT winner.
“But, there was a lot of fog up on the mountain, at one point you couldn’t see much more than 15 yards, it was really thick. It took me back to the old days, where you were sent out in the rain, the fog and early morning practice, so it was really strange”.
In recent years, Lougher has enjoyed Classic TT success, securing two wins in 2014 and picking up a second place last year. His last TT win was in 2009 in the Ultra-Lightweight class.
“The bikes are a lot slower here, the 250 is superb”, said Lougher. “It’s fast enough to be enjoyable, but they aren’t overly fast, like the 190 odd mile an hour superbikes. Having said that I think I hit 155 mph which is still fast, but really enjoyable.”
Lougher will be the fifth bike to leave Glencrutchery Road during Saturday’s Senior Classic race and later that day will go off at number six in the Lightweight race.
New Zealander, Bruce Anstey, shot to the top of the leaderboard during Wednesday nights’ Lightweight session with a time of 19 minutes 53 seconds, just one second off Lougher’s best effort from Tuesday.