Isle of Man TT
Isle of Man TT winner Ryan Farquhar has been presented with the prestigious Geoff Duke Trophy after winning the 2010 Duke Road Race Rankings in dominant style.
The Dungannon man was handed the handsome crystal trophy at a star-studded ceremony in Belfast by Peter Duke, Managing Director of Isle of Man-based Duke Marketing.
Farquhar, who took two podiums during the 2010 Isle of Man TT, has topped the rankings on five occasions in the past nine years, including winning the title fo4r the past three years in a row.
In honor of that achievement, Mr. Duke kept a promise made by his father – six-time World Champion and TT legend Geoff Duke O.B.E – that the trophy could be kept by any rider who won it for three consecutive years.
Farquhar now keeps the trophy, rather than a replica as in previous years. As the Duke Road Race Rankings marks its 10th anniversary in 2011, a new trophy is being created – and Farquhar has already stated his intentions to win that as well!
The presentation was made at the Adelaide Racer Awards on Friday in front of an audience of racing legends and current stars of the World, British and Irish racing scenes.
The event featured many names synonymous with the Isle of Man TT, including Sammy Miller M.B.E. as guest of honour, Phillip McCallen, Brian Reid, Ian Hutchinson, Michael Dunlop, Guy Martin and Conor Cummins. Also in attendance were World Superbike front-runner Jonathan Rea, World Supersport star Eugene Laverty, British Superbike Championship race winners Michael Laverty and Alastair Seeley, plus racing legends like Jeremy McWilliams.
The Duke Road Race Rankings is the only award which measures performance across the entire season, including national events and international races, such as the TT. It ensures those riders who show commitment to the roads throughout the year are recognized for their efforts and achievements.
For the past three years, the scene has been dominated by Farquhar, most recently with his own KMR Racing team. Still performing to the highest level at international meetings, including two hard-fought podiums at the 2010 TT, Farquhar is also a regular at national events.
His consistent performances and dedication to road race meetings has seen Farquhar always near the top of the Duke Road Race Rankings, and winning it five times.
During 2010 Farquhar took 57 race wins in rankings’ races, nine second and five third places, and 51 fastest laps, 19 of which were record laps! His final points tally was 4,444, double the haul of nearest rival William Dunlop, who was closely followed by brother Michael and Hutchy.
Speaking at the awards ceremony Farquhar said:
"I am really pleased to win this again. Quite few people know this now, but Geoff told me that anyone who won it three times in a row would get to keep it – so it’s mine now!"
During the evening, Farquhar again confirmed he will contest the full 2011 season, with Kawasaki machinery, and is targeting even more wins, including the elusive ‘big bike’ victory at one of the international meetings.
That means he starts this year’s Duke Road Race Rankings as undoubted favorite yet again.
Mr. Duke said that although it was never intended that the Geoff Duke Trophy would be handed over for the final time, with a new one being readied for the next ceremony, he was delighted to be able to recognize the amazing racing achievements of Farquhar.
Geoff Duke says: "The promise was made, and the promise is kept. Where better to give the trophy to Ryan than here at the Adelaide Racer Awards. Irish Racer magazine has, yet again, organized a brilliant celebration of a great sport, it is one of the highlights of the racing calendar and an event Duke just doesn’t want to miss! "
The Duke Road Race Rankings celebrates its 10th year in 2011 and has gone from strength to strength over the decade. This year’s provisional calendar, which is due to begin with the Ian Watson spring Cup at Scarborough on April 17, boasts 26 meetings, including the TT, and is planned to run until Nov. 9 and the season-closing Macau Grand Prix, which joined the schedule in 2010 for the first time.