We may be a long way from the days of Scott Russell, but that doesn’t mean a sheer talent like Andy Farrell can’t flog this race-prepped 1991 Kawasaki ZXR750 around the Billown Street Circuit at the Classic TT in 2019 like nobody’s business.
What’s even more impressive is that Farrell had never ridden this bike before doing this lap. Yes, he’s a double Manx Grand Prix winner in the Lightweight race in 2018, and was the 19th rider ever to lap the Manx GP at over 120mph. The thing is, despite his particular combination of both talent and speed, he’d also never ridden the Billown Street Circuit before.
Despite those circumstances, Farrell still handily took 6th place in the 2019 Pre-TT Classic Races. His bike was prepped by Steadplan Primus Racing, and is great evidence that what some might consider the glory days of World Superbike racing never really left us.
Everyone loves a scrappy underdog, and back in the day, that’s exactly what a stock ZXR750 was. It frequently punched seemingly way above its weight against the likes of Honda RC30s and Ducati 888s in WSBK. Of course, this specific machine that Farrell rides in this video is a far cry from one that’s fresh off the showroom floor. Even back in the day, it was a seemingly attainable bit of kit that offered 105hp from its 748cc inline-four, long before the introduction of modern rider aids that help racers tame today’s massive literbike power figures and keep them going fast on track.
In a world filled with gorgeous ’90s Japanese superbikes, this is one that is definitely desirable. Watching a racer of Farrell’s talent just makes it seem even more so.