The continuing progress of electric motorcycle racing was illustrated this week when MotoCzysz won the TT Zero Race at the Isle of Man for the second year running. In achieving a new lap record for electric motorcycles of 99.513 mph, the Segway-sponsored MotoCzysz E1PC went within a whisker of claiming the GBP10,000 prize for the first electric bike to lap the 37 mile circuit at 100mph at the same time as demonstrating yet another quantum leap in electric bike performance from last year's 96.820 mph average and the 2009 winning average of 87.434 mph.
The MotoCzysz was clearly the fastest electric bike of the week, with last year's winner Mark Miller finishing second to his team-mate Michael Rutter, giving the American brand a 1-2 result. To cap things off, the MotoCzysz was also the fastest through the speed traps, with a top speed of 149.5mph.
The small field also included four University outfits competing for the GBP5000 University Prize, with third place outright and the first university team home going to the Kingston Ecotricity ION Horse ridden by George Spence, though considerably slower than the MotoCzysz at just 88.435mph. Allan Brew on the MIT machine was second in the university class and fourth outright.
The times might have been even faster for the winning machine had experienced TT rider Rutter not backed off to conserve power, and there's also little doubt that the bike has considerably more performance available for shorter circuits thanks to its recently commercialised d1g1tal dr1ve.
Rutter thought that the bike could have gone even quicker but held back to conserve power, though there's clearly a huge performance gap between electric bikes and the fastest petrol-engined road bikes which lap the circuit some 28% faster. Viewed another way, it's 54 years since the first 100 mph lap of the circuit by a petrol-engined bike.