ISLE OF MAN – Tim Reeves and Dan Sayle won the opening race of the 2013 Isle of Man TT Races powered by Monster Energy, taking victory in the three-lap Sure Sidecar race by almost 20 seconds over Conrad Harrison and Mike Aylott and Dave Molyneux and Patrick Farrance.
For quadruple World Champion Reeves it was his first TT victory, five years after making his debut, whilst Sayle became the joint most successful passenger in history, joining Rick Long on eight wins.
With ideal conditions all around the Mountain Course, it was Ben and Tom Birchall who grabbed the early initiative, leading at Glen Helen on the opening lap by 1.3 seconds from Reeves/Sayle whilst pre-race favourites Molyneux/Farrance found themselves back in fifth although just 5 seconds covered the leading five outfits.
By Ramsey, the Birchall’s had put in two superb sectors to extend their lead over Reeves/Sayle to 5.48 seconds but coming down the Mountain they clipped the bank at Kate’s Cottage and suffered a puncture, pulling in to retire at Creg ny Baa.
That all meant that Reeves/Sayle led at the end of the first lap with a speed of 113.575 mph, their gap over new second-placed crew Molyneux/Farrance almost ten seconds. Harrison/Aylott were less than two seconds behind in third with John Holden/Andy Winkle, Dougie Wright/Martin Hull and Gary Bryan/Jamie Winn completing the top six.
On the second circuit, Reeves/Sayle continued to extend their advantage as they closed in on Molyneux/Farrance on the road, latching on to their rivals as they made the Mountain climb once more. Indeed, the second lap was Reeves’ best ever around the course and with a speed of 114.608 mph, they were now leading on the road and over 20 seconds clear of Molyneux/Farrance.