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Dunlop: Joey’s Isle of Man TT win record “playing on our mind all week”

Michael Dunlop says the Isle of Man TT win record of 26 wins held by his late uncle Joey Dunlop since 2000 “has been playing on our mind all week”.

Michael Dunlop, MD Racing Yamaha, Superport TT 2024

Since his final TT success in 2000 in the Ultra Lightweight contest in 2000, just weeks before his death in a race in Estonia, Joey Dunlop’s tally of 26 victories on the island has been unmatched.

John McGuinness had been the closest until last year, when he scored his 23rd win in the Zero TT in 2016, before Michael Dunlop notched up his 25th success last year.

Dunlop matched his late uncle Joey’s record of 26 wins by dominating the opening Supersport race of TT 2024 on Saturday, beating Davey Todd by over eight seconds aboard his MD Racing Yamaha.

Though Dunlop had won both Supersport races in 2023 and 2022, practice week in 2024 on in the class have proved tricky, with the 26-time TT winner switching from Triumph to Yamaha machinery.

On top of that, Dunlop hurt his wrist in a crash at the Cookstown 100 earlier this year and admitted on the TT+ live broadcast after the Supersport race that he “felt sore” midway through the four-lap contest.

Commenting on equalling Joey Dunlop’s record, Michael says it had weighed on his mind all week and finally matching it is “something special”.

“It’s fantastic. I knew it was going to be tight, that’s for sure,” Dunlop began.

“We made a lot of changes, we had issues in practice and it just took me a couple of laps to bed in.

Michael Dunlop, MD Racing Yamaha

Michael Dunlop, MD Racing Yamaha

Photo by: iomtt.com

“But look, I assumed it was Davey [behind me] and Davey’s riding really well this week.

“He may be a bit frustrated, but he’s got that pace and to beat somebody like Davey round here with the form he’s in at the minute was tough going.

“I felt I was sore in the middle of the race and I was just biting the screen.

“To equal Joey’s record, it’s been something that’s been playing on our mind all week… well, on everyone’s mind I think.

“Well, fantastic. No matter what ever happens in life now, everybody has always wanted to get to Joey’s record and I’ve got to it. So, for me, that’s something special.”

That the all-time TT win record is shared by two Dunlops is a poignant moment for this road racing dynasty.

Joey Dunlop’s death at 48 years old in 2000 was followed by the passing of Michael Dunlop’s father Robert, who was killed in an incident at the North West 200 in 2008.

Just a few days later, Michael Dunlop scored an emotional victory at the event in the 250cc race. Michael Dunlop’s older brother William died in a crash at the Skerries races in 2018.

Michael Dunlop’s race to 26 Isle of Man TT wins

Win #1 – 2009 Supersport TT 2
Win #2 – 2011 Superstock TT
Win #3 – 2012 Supersport TT 2
Win #4-7 - 2013 Superbike TT, Superstock TT, Supersport TT 1 & 2
Win #8-11 – 2014 Superbike TT, Superstock TT, Supersport TT 2, Senior TT
Win #12-13 – 2016 Superbike TT, Senior TT
Win #14-15 – 2017 Supersport TT 1, Senior TT
Win #16-18 – 2018 Superbike TT, Supersport TT 1, Lightweight TT
Win #19 – 2019 Lightweight TT
Win #20-21 – 2022 Supersport TT 1, Supersport TT 2
Win #22-25 – 2023 Superbike TT, Supersport TT 1, Supersport TT 2, Lightweight TT
Win #26 – 2024 Supersport TT 1

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