Right now, ten teams are encamped on the Isle of Man during this TT motorcycle racing season with the goal of proving the worth of the electric racing motorcycles they've brought with them. With all three qualifying sessions now complete, markers have now been laid down and the shape of the 2013 edition of the TT Zero is becoming clear. Much like last year, the race on Wednesday looks like it's down to a shootout between Michael Rutter on the thoroughly updated 2013 MotoCzysz E1pc (pictured at right) and John McGuinness aboard the equally revised Mugen Shinden Ni (pictured above).
This is not to suggest that the efforts of the others are irrelevant. Everyone has been showing better lap times than in previous years. Perhaps as notable as the achievements of the big-budget boys is the Buckeye Current entry from The Ohio State University. With Rob Barber in the saddle – you may remember him as the first winner of an electric motorcycle race on the Isle of Man held under the auspices of the TTXGP in 2009 – the American students currently (no pun intended) have a stronghold on fourth place with a 91.768 mile-per-hour lap.
In the case of the frontrunners, last year's record average speed of 104.056 miles per hour has been smashed by the top three riders, with McGuinness' 109.038 mph lap showing a slight edge for the "don't-call-it-a-Honda" Mugen machine. With two bikes on the island though (the other is piloted by the very capable Mark Miller), we think MotoCzysz still has a good chance of winning its fourth in a row.
You can follow the action this year via the Isle of Man TT app (Android or iOS), though we especially look forward to see the entire race on video (again) in the days to come. In order to whet your appetites, we suggest you scroll down below for a trio of videos showing some of the contenders practicing.