2011 Isle of Man TT Duke Awards
For the sixth time, two-time Isle of Man TT winner Ryan Farquhar was the recipient of the Geoff Duke Trophy during the Adelaide Motorcycle Awards in Belfast last week.
Farquhar, who has earned nine TT podium, which includes winning the Production 600 TT in 2004, and the second Supersport Junior TT in 2005, received the award from Duke Managing Director, Peter Duke; the award is named after Peter's father, a multi-world champion.
Peter Duke also presented the Duke Road Race Rankings Newcomer Award to Ronan Pentony, whose performances on the roads during 2011 ensured he was the top-placed new name in the rankings. It is the first time the rankings has featured an award for newcomers.
And the crowd was filled with many Isle of Man TT stars, including 17-time IOM TT winner John McGuinness, Michael Dunlop, Steve Plater and Phillip McCallen, plus other leading racing names such as reigning British Superbike Champion Tommy Hill, reigning British Supersport Champion Alastair Seeley, World Superbike race winner Eugene Laverty and Steven Cull, the latest entry to the Bridgestone Hall of Fame.
Peter Duke says: "We were delighted to once again be asked to present the Geoff Duke Trophy at the Adelaide Motorcycle Awards, which is rightly regarded as one of the leading off-season events in the motorcycling world.
"The Duke Road Race Rankings were established more than a decade ago to recognise the dedication of true ‘between-the-hedges' racers, ensuring their commitment to pure road racing events was acknowledged.
"The Geoff Duke Trophy is now regarded as one of the great accolades in road racing, and the rankings are hotly contested every year - not least in 2011 when Ryan Farquhar was chased all the way by Dunlop brothers Michael and William.
"It was, as ever, wonderful to see the reception winner Ryan received from the other greats of motorcycle racing during the presentation, and to be able to recognise one of road racing's new stars in Ronan."
Dungannon's Ryan is no stranger to the Duke Road Race Rankings - 2011 was the sixth time overall, and fourth time in a row, he has claimed victory in the series, which features international road race meetings like the TT and North West 200 alongside smaller events such as Skerries and Walderstown.
After his 2010 win, Ryan was allowed to keep the original Geoff Duke Trophy, meaning it was a specially-commissioned new trophy which he was handed at the Adelaide Motorcycle Awards.
Ronan, of Drogheda, finished the season 10th overall in the Duke Road Race Rankings after a year which saw him take three race victories and 15 other podiums. His trophy was a replica of the now famous glass ball which sits atop the Geoff Duke Trophy.
During the evening, he hinted at plans to make his TT debut this year.