Michael Dunlop snatches stunning second spot at TT

4/6/2012 PACEMAKER PRESS. Michael Dunlop during todays Monster Energy Supersport 1 class race at the TT. Picture Charles McQuillan/Pacemaker.
4/6/2012 PACEMAKER PRESS. Michael Dunlop during todays Monster Energy Supersport 1 class race at the TT. Picture Charles McQuillan/Pacemaker.

Ballymoney rider roared back from his disappointment in the Isle of Man TT Supersport race to claim a second spot in the Superstock TT on Monday evening.

Jubilant John McGuinness punched the air in delight as he finally triumphed in the Superstock TT race when he was joined on the podium by Ulster duo Michael Dunlop and Ryan Farquhar.

McGuinness has now extended his total number of Isle of Man TT wins to 19, putting Northern Ireland icon Joey Dunlop’s record tally of 26 successes on the Mountain Course under threat for the first time.

Padgetts Honda star McGuinness, who won Saturday’s Superbike TT, had never before tasted success in the Superstock event and badly craved a victory in the production-based class.

The 40-year-old meant business from the off and although he disputed the lead on the opening lap of four with KMR Kawasaki’s Farquhar, McGuinness slowly established a gap and continued to pull out more as he asserted his authority on the 1000cc Fireblade.

Farquhar looked on course to finish as the runner-up, but he was thwarted by a late charge by Dunlop – last year’s Royal London 360 Superstock TT winner – who set the fastest speed of the race on his final lap at 129.293mph on his Kawasaki ZX-10R after languishing in 11th place at Glen Helen on the opening lap.

McGuinness’s margin of victory was 7.8 seconds over Dunlop at the finish, who in turn was almost five seconds clear of Farquhar.

Padgetts rider Bruce Anstey – hero of the opening Supersport race yesterday – Guy Martin on the Tyco Suzuki and the impressive James Hillier (Bournemouth Kawasaki) rounded out the top six.

McGuinness said: “I really concentrated from the start and it’s a bike I know really well because I ride it all the time in the British championship.

“I wanted that – I really did want it and I pushed and pushed. I love Clive [Padgett] to bits and he’s not just a sponsor, he’s a friend.

“He’s provided me with a bike since 2007 and I’m glad to repay him.

“Coming into the pits the bike was running out of fuel so on the last lap I rolled it off a lot earlier going into the corners and I rode like the district nurse over the Mountain just to get it back.”

After a slow start by his standards, Dunlop rallied to snatch a stunning podium to make up for the disappointment of his retirement from the Supersport race earlier in the day.

“It’s not what I wanted but I’ve nobody to blame but myself,” he said.

“The bike was perfect and everything went well. I really tried on that last lap – I lost the front a couple of times and I got a few two-wheel slides.

“I just want to thank all the time and it’s nice to have Gary [Ryan] back again and he’s a great asset to the team; hopefully this is the start of something new again.”

KMR Kawasaki’s Farquhar, favourite for Friday’s Lightweight Supertwin race, said he was more than satisfied with third.

“I really enjoyed that,” said Farquhar. “I didn’t get off to the best of starts and John had pulled a few seconds on me.

“I gave it my all to get on the podium and after all the grief we had this week it’s fantastic to be on the podium.”

Michael Rutter was seventh, ahead of Gary Johnson, Dan Stewart and Cameron Donald in tenth.

Adrian Archibald was 15th, Davy Morgan 18th and John Burrows 28th.

William Dunlop was a retirement.

The Superstock had been pencilled in for a 2pm start but was put back until 6.30pm due to a schedule revamp as a result of a fatal road traffic accident on Monday morning.