Hickman: IoM TT scrutineer Superstock stripping "ruined" Senior race
Peter Hickman says Isle of Man TT scrutineers "ruined" his Senior race, as he was forced to run his problematic Superbike after they stripped his Superstock bike on Thursday
The Smiths Racing rider used a hybrid STK bike in Monday's SBK race, and hoped to race it again in the Senior event after experiencing a water leaking issue on the machine during practice last Sunday.
A positive pair of laps during Thursday practice led Hickman to consider using the SBK, but he was leaning towards the hybrid before a scrutineer ordered his race-winning STK bike to be stripped on Thursday night, leaving his team no time to build the hybrid for the Senior.
Hickman dominated the first four laps, but began to suffer the same water leak issue on lap three, and eventually lost the win to Dean Harrison after having to nurse his S1000RR home.
While he slammed the TT scrutineers for ultimately ruining his race, Hickman called for more "common sense" to be applied to the rules going forward.
When asked by Autosport if the rules needed to change, he said: "No, just some common sense.
"If they'd just sealed the engine, it wasn't going to change, I was going to ride it today and [then] they could strip it down to the crank, I couldn't care less.
"But the long and short of it is, they ruined our race today because [the chief scrutineer] made us strip it yesterday."
Hickman explained that after the second pit stop in the Senior race "this returning issue we keep having on the Superbike [returned].
"It just keeps chucking water out," Hickman continued.
"It doesn't get hot, it just chucks water out at anything over 11,000rpm. So, once I left the pits on lap two, as soon as I went down Bray Hill it was chunking water out.
"I had to just manage it, and basically I had to use half throttle and no more than 11,000rpm. So, two laps riding a round at 50% throttle was not fun.
"We all had this inkling it was possibly going to happen.
"We've had three different engines, four radiators, numerous different rad caps, bottles - you name it, it's been changed on it three or four times.
"And for some reason on the Superbike it just keeps doing it. But our hands were tied unfortunately.
"After the Superstock race, [with] the chief scrutineer, we pleaded with him to just seal the engine and strip it after the Senior, and he pretty much told us 'bollocks'."
Hickman also revealed that the issue is exclusive to the SBK, and has not been affecting him during his British Superbike Championship campaign.
"Only at North West 200 and here [the problem occurs], so it only seems to be on long stretches at high RPM for some reason," he added.
"But the Superstock bike doesn't do it, and it's exactly the same. So your guess is as good as ours."
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