TT 2018: Superbike winner Michael Dunlop says 'I won that race for Dan'

Michael Dunlop celebrates his Superbike TT victory on Saturday with the Tyco BMW team.
Michael Dunlop celebrates his Superbike TT victory on Saturday with the Tyco BMW team.

Michael Dunlop said he was spurred on to win Saturday’s RST Superbike race as a tribute to his Tyco BMW team-mate Dan Kneen.

On Wednesday, the 30-year-old Manx rider was tragically killed following a crash at Churchtown in practice.

Superbike TT winner Michael Dunlop on the Tyco BMW at Ballacrye.

Superbike TT winner Michael Dunlop on the Tyco BMW at Ballacrye.

The Northern Ireland team was urged to continue racing by Kneen’s family and under difficult circumstances, Dunlop rose to the occasion as he claimed his 16th win around the 37.73-mile course.

He was gifted the lead when Dean Harrison was forced out with a clutch problem after smashing the outright lap record from a standing start with a lap of 134.432mph.

Harrison’s advantage at one point was 16 seconds as he led throughout the first half of the race, although Dunlop was closing his advantage following the first pit stop before Harrison’s luck ran out.

The Ballymoney man, who took the win by 50 seconds from Conor Cummins, said: “It’s been hard to celebrate this week and I’m not one for looking for pity, but it’s been a hard week.

Manx rider Dan Kneen with Tyco BMW team owner Hector Neill and his mechanics at the Tandragee 100 in May.

Manx rider Dan Kneen with Tyco BMW team owner Hector Neill and his mechanics at the Tandragee 100 in May.

“I wanted to do something for Dan and in the middle of the race, we started to get stuck in a bit more.

“We had a problem with the rear end but the Tyco BMW team did a great job and I wanted to do that for Dan. None of us can do anything to make it better but that is for the family and I’d just like to thank the Tyco boys and my mechanics – they worked fantastic in the pits.”