MOTOR RACING: Hickman seals further podium places and a trophy

Peter Hickman in action in the Ulster GP - Photo Phillip Campbell EMN-140818-101423001
Peter Hickman in action in the Ulster GP - Photo Phillip Campbell EMN-140818-101423001

Peter Hickman netted a win and a brace of fifth places plus a seventh in his very first visit to the Ulster Grand Prix in Northern Ireland at the weekend.

He also became the fastest ever newcomer at the event with a fastest lap of 131mph around the high speed Dundrod road course.

The Louth rider suffered a bit of a set back on Thursday when he had a slow speed crash with the Ice Valley by Motorsave BMW on the first lap of qualifying in the Superstock class.

But he was undeterred and came back to take a fine seventh place in the Superbike race, matching the speeds of the Superbike riders, and although he was on the BMW Superstock bike his fastest lap of 131.198mph made him the fastest ever newcomer to the course.

Later in the day Hicky was out in the Dundrod National Challenge race around the 7.4-mile course and dominated the race, taking the win with an advantage of more than 20 seconds and posting several more 130+mph laps.

On Saturday the weather played its part in the Ulster GP races, with drizzle and strong winds causing a few problems for the riders.

But Hicky took the difficult conditions in his stride and took fifth place in the Superstock race following up with another fifth place in the high profile Superbike event, which won him the Best Newcomer Trophy to add to the two won earlier in the season at the Isle of Man TT races and the North West 200.

Peter Hickman said: “It’s been another really good and enjoyable meeting for me and I’m delighted with the results and to pick up the ‘Best Newcomer’ award again.

“I made a bit of a mistake on Thursday and crashed out, making a real mess of the bike, but the team did wonders to get me back out in time for the races whilst Steve Hicken and Michael Dunlop helped me out with various parts.

“The bike felt exactly the same as it did before the crash and to get seventh and lap at more than 131mph in the Dundrod 150 race was really pleasing given the state the bike was in a few hours earlier.

“It was a lot tougher on Saturday with the poor weather, which was unfortunate for everyone, as it made both riding and tyre choice tricky. I was over the moon with a pair of fifths though, especially in the Superbike race, and I have really enjoyed my first time at Dundrod. Shoey and the whole team have been mega and they did a mint job all week so it’s nice to repay them with some good results.”

Paul Shoesmith, team owner, said: “Once again, Peter’s attitude to the whole meeting has been exemplary and the whole team is ecstatic with his results.

“He has learnt the circuit so quickly and although he was obviously disappointed to have tipped off, he came back in superb style not only in terms of his results but also his lap in excess of 131mph which has made him the fastest newcomer in the history of the event.

“He has attained some fantastic results, particularly those achieved in difficult conditions, so we couldn’t be happier.”

Hicky returns to short circuit racing at the weekend when he contests the two British Superbike races for the RAF Reserves Honda team at Cadwell Park on Bank Holiday Monday.

The weekend kicks off with two free practice sessions on Saturday the first at 10.10am followed by FP2 at 3.30pm. On Saturday there is a further free practice session at 10.10am before he goes into the three section qualifying session at 4.05pm. There is a 15-minute warm up on Monday at 9.10am and the two 18 lap races take place at 1pm and 4.30pm.