SMASHING RECORDS: Subaru set a new lap record around the fabled Isle of Man TT course. Image: Quickpic
Douglas, Isle of Man - Subaru announced that a Subaru WRX STI time attack car piloted by Mark Higgins set a new lap record of the fabled 59.5km Isle of Man TT road course. With an average lap speed of 207km/h, Higgins set a time of 17minutes, 35 seconds.
The previous record, held by Higgins, was 19min 26sec (average speed of 187km/h).
Higgins said: "It was an amazing run today considering we were running in very hot conditions and the tarmac was quite soft. With lower temperatures we would be making more horsepower, so I still believe we have more left in terms of speed, but it is great to have another record in the bank.
READ: WRX STI smashes Isle of Man record
"The chassis on this new car is fantastic to drive. It makes a difference driving a car custom designed for this course. It really allowed me to pick up time in each sector in the more technical parts of the course,” Higgins concluded.
Purpose-built for the Isle
For the 2016 car, Subaru created a purpose-built car capable of tackling the arduous TT course, which is similar in style to both the Nurburgring and Le Mans in the demands it puts on suspension and engines. It called upon the joint expertise of Prodrive for the design and build, and Subaru Tecnica International (STI) for technical assistance.
Prodrive and Subaru have won three World Rally Championship manufacturer titles together and three World Rally Championship driver titles. Prodrive also has experience running team Aston Martin in the FIA World Endurance Championship and Le Mans 24-Hour race. STI has experience designing road-course cars, designing the back-to-back class-winner at the 2015 and 2016 Nürburgring 24-Hour Races.
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Subaru is back at the Isle of Man as a main sponsor. Dominick Infante, national manager of product communications, Subaru USA, said: "The Isle of Man really shows the capability of the WRX STI. We are evaluating whether to make another run on Friday and top this record."