On the Isle of Man’s 37 mile Mountain course, just getting around the entire track is something of an accomplishment for an e-bike. Taking a place on the podium is a remarkable achievement, and doing so in the first-ever attempt at the event is even more so, yet that is what Victory Racing did today.
Victory factory rider Lee Johnston rode a 111.620mph lap in the SES TT Zero race to take third place. Johnston’s teammate, Guy Martin, sweetened the result by taking fourth overall. He also posted his fastest lap of the week in the race – a 109.717mph, just shy of the 110mph mark.
Johnston said after the race: “Yeah, awesome to be back on the podium again. Every time we go out, we’re getting faster. Think we had a little bit of battery left, so maybe could have went a bit quicker. Fair play to the Mugen boys, but at the end of the day they have been coming here for three years and in their first year they did nowhere near 110mph, so credit to the whole Victory team, it’s an absolutely awesome job. The bike’s so fun to ride because it’s so small, I really like riding it.”
Martin summed up his experience, saying: “It’s a proper fast bike. The Victory boys judged it just right to use up all of the battery power as I came over the finish line. I’d need more time to properly get my head around it but I’m happy to have had the opportunity to ride it.”
Victory Racing Team Manager, Brian Wismann, said: “I’m feeling very, very good. It was good day for Victory Racing on our first ever time at the TT. We accomplished what we set out to accomplish… got on to the podium, but we also got a 111mph average in our first ever TT Zero race. Speeds were good, the bikes were good and reliable, they looked great out there. I’m just very, very pleased with all the hard work the team’s put in and the work that the riders have done to get the bikes round here so quickly.”
Seven out of the 10 electric bike teams on the Isle of Man entered the race. It is the very first time that five teams have all achieved over 100mph laps under race conditions, indicating that electric racing technology is being taken seriously by many brands in anticipation of mass-produced consumer vehicles.
Gary Gray, Director Motorcycle Product for Victory Motorcycles, said: “I couldn't be prouder of the team for putting a bike on the podium the first year out and for building the fastest American electric bike ever at the Isle of Man TT. I promised we would be competitive and beating nine of the 10 teams proves American performance.”
A podium result has also excited Parker, the makers of the GVM electric motor that propels the bikes. Parker’s US-based strategic account manager, Kevin Holloway said: “We are proud of the entire Victory Racing team for the third and fourth place finishes in the TT Zero. Everybody worked so hard and we exceeded our expectations by setting an American lap record today.”