After a practice week severely affected by the weather, Paul Jordan and the Dafabet Devitt Racing team were finally able get their race week underway at the 2019 Isle of Man TT Races as they took strong finishes of 12th and 18th in Monday’s Supersport and Superbike races.
The evening’s Supersport race saw the Northern Ireland rider line up on the Kawasaki ZX-6R and despite having only had two laps in practice on the bike, 14th on the leaderboard put him in a good frame of mind. Indeed, starting from 17th position, a strong opening lap of 120.614mph saw him move up the leaderboard to a good 12th place.
Second time around the 37.73-mile circuit, Paul upped his pace as he got more and more dialled into both the race and the bike and although a quicker lap of 121.773mph saw him remain in 12th place, he was more than hopeful of moving into the top ten in the second half of the race.
However, rain had begun to fall on the west part of the circuit and race organisers took the decision to bring the race to a conclusion at the end of the second lap and Paul was duly classified in a fine 12th place which saw him win another silver replica.
Campaigning 1000cc machinery for only the second time around the Mountain Course, 27-year old Jordan felt the lack of track time during practice more than most but having lapped at 122.839mph in the final practice session on the Kawasaki ZX-10RR, he came into Monday morning’s shortened 4-lap Superbike race, moved back from Saturday, in a more confident mood.
Conditions were the best they’d been all week although strong winds of 25-30mph would again be problematical. Nevertheless, Paul started well and the opening lap saw him break the 125mph barrier for the first time with a speed of 125.385mph seeing him slot into a solid 17th place.
Second time around, his pace dropped slightly to 124.214mph as he came into the pits for the solitary pit stop but he continued to run strongly inside the top twenty in 19th place. He was soon back into the race as the team did a great pit stop but the red flag came out shortly afterwards due to an incident and with the result declared at the end of the second lap, Paul was awarded 18th place which earned him a bronze replica.
Paul Jordan: “I only managed two laps in practice on the 600 bike so I’m pretty pleased to have finished 12th, my best ever finish so far at the TT, and I had a pretty good run. I would obviously have liked more time on the bike but it was the same for everyone and I felt at home in the race and had no issues so was happy with the result. If the race had gone the full distance, I think a top ten finish was a definite possibility but we’ll have another go tomorrow.”
“The Superbike race was a bit more challenging but we made another step forward from practice week and have a few more changes we can make with set up ahead of the Superstock race. Lapping at 125mph from a standing start, my best ever lap, was pleasing and my aim was a top twenty finish but I know there’s more to come later in the week. We’ve the Supersport and Lightweight races on Wednesday and the Twin feels really good so it would be nice if we could finish on the podium but we’ll simply do our best and see where that takes us.”
Roy Constable, Team Co-owner: “We’re more than happy with the results from the opening race day and Paul made good moves up the leaderboard from his starting positions. Despite the limited track time, Paul’s made good progress on all of the bikes and it was a shame the Supersport race ended early as we felt a top ten finish was on the cards. We’d had a few overheating issues during practice but a new radiator cured the problems and 12th and a silver replica from a start position of 17th is a good result so we’ll take that.”
“The TT is all about track time and laps and both Paul and the team are still learning the new Kawasaki ZX-10RR but he still improved his personal best lap time by a good margin and a lap in excess of 125mph in only his second year here on a big bike is a fine effort so, overall, it’s been a good day. We’ve still four races to go so are more than hopeful of improving our results as the week continues.”
The incident that brought the Superbike race to an early end sadly claimed the life of Daley Mathison and everyone at Dafabet Devitt Racing wishes to express their condolences to all of Daley’s family and friends at this difficult time.
Racing resumes on Wednesday with the four-lap Lightweight and Supersport races.
Pictures by Pacemaker Press International
Monster Energy Supersport race (2 laps)
1 Lee Johnston (Yamaha)
2 James Hillier (Kawasaki)
3 Peter Hickman (Triumph)
4 Dean Harrison (Kawasaki)
5 Michael Dunlop (Honda)
6 Conor Cummins (Honda)
12 Paul Jordan (Dafabet Devitt Racing Kawasaki)
RST Superbike race (2 laps)
1 Peter Hickman (BMW)
2 Dean Harrison (Kawasaki)
3 Conor Cummins (Honda)
4 James Hillier (Kawasaki)
5 Michael Rutter (Honda)
6 Michael Dunlop (BMW)
18 Paul Jordan (Dafabet Devitt Racing Kawasaki)