The Isle of Man TT had geared itself up for another afternoon of racing ready for records to be broken and remade. And so had Ian Hutchinson. He is a man on a mission, determined to make up for lost time, and to put his stamp on the TT record books. From a hellish five years to an emotional victory on Monday, and then, as evening fell over the island and the second Monster Energy Supersport race came to a close on Wednesday, a hat-trick of wins. He also added to his collection of TT wins, making it a good 11 and putting him in some good company, including Phillip McCallen, Steve Hislop and Michael Dunlop.
As Ian Hutchinson pulled into the parc ferme at the Isle of Man, revving his Yamaha, surrounded in smoke, I bounced in my chair all the way across the oceans in New Delhi, India. And that makes it three, I yelped!
The opening lap had Quattro Plant Muc-Off Kawasaki’s James Hillier leading at Glen Helen; Hutchinson followed close behind with Bruce Anstey in third. That didn’t last long. Hutchy was in the lead by a second at Ramsey and ended lap 1 at 127.093mph with a 3.8s advantage over Anstey. Hillier had fallen back by 4 seconds and becoming fair game as far as Guy Martin was concerned. Meanwhile Michael Dunlop entered the pits and retired, his body too exhausted to complete the race.
Hutchinson continued to dominate into the second lap and extended his lead, clocking in the fastest lap of the race at 127.751mph. He was leading Anstey by 8 seconds and Martin passed Hillier for third spot. Hutchinson tried to extend his lead on the third lap, but Anstey was quick on the Mountain and reduced the lead by 8.6s. When Hutchy realized that Anstey was charging his way through the field, the Bingley Bullet pressed harder still and won by 14.8s. He later said in the post-race press conference, “I was just enjoying it riding…I was loving it really.”
Anstey took 2nd place, with Martin taking the 3rd spot. Hillier clocked in his best Supersport ride with a 4th. Gary Johnson, Lee Johnston, Conor Cummins, John McGuinness, Dan Keen and David Johnson completed the top 10.
Hutchy’s phenomenal wins has now brought his TT Championship total to 95 points followed by Anstey (23 points down) and Hillier with 52 points.
Speaking at the post-race conference, an excited Guy Martin admitted that his bike was better than the 3rd he had got. “We’ve not had the best of weeks up to now…We have struggled with the Superstock a bit and broke down in the first superbike race but I’m not doom and gloom…To get a podium is spot on. I’m happy and happy for the Smiths team. I do think that bike is better than that; it is better than third.”