Steve Plater has just won today’s Senior TT but it could not have been a more dramatic race to close the 2009 TT races on the 37.73mile Mountain course.
HM Plant Honda duo John McGuinness and Plater set the pace from the start of the six-lap race, McGuinness smashing his own lap record on lap one at 130.953mph, with Plater- 3.6s adrift in second place, also inside the old record at 130.490mph.
McGuiness upped the pace on the second lap with an incredible 131.578mph lap while Plater clocked 130.192.
After the pit stops, McGuinness had a lead of 16s over Plater with Manxman Conor Cummins second on the McAdoo Kawasaki in third.
McGuiness was relentless in his pace and had over 18s lead over Plater going into the fourth lap but then news came through that he was a retirement at Cruickshanks with a broken chain.
The drama didn’t end there. Guy Martin – sitting fifth - suffered the same fate as McGuinness when his chain snapped as the Hydrex Honda rider left the pits. And Keith Amor, who was eighth was another retirement at the pit stops with a rear wheel spindle problem. And on the fifth lap, Ian Hutchinson said goodbye to third place when slipped off at Quarter Bridge.
In the end, Plater took the win by 19.5s ahead of Cummins and set a new race record of over 128mph.
Gary Johnson took third, despite a 10s penalty for missing the stop box in his first pit stop. Adrian Archibald, Carl Rennie and Dan Stewart round out the top six.
For Plater it’s his second TT victory in only three years of competing on the mountain course, after he won last year’s first Supersport race. He said: “It’ll probably sink in sometime tonight. It’s what dreams are made of. It’s unfortunate for John but that’s the TT for you.
"I tried my hardest on the out lap because Neil Tuxworth (team boss) has been whinging on all week that I’ve not bee quick enough on the first lap!”
For McAdoo Kawasaki rider Cummins it was his second podium of the week. He said: “Mental. I can’t believe it. I thought one rostrum in the week was good but two is an absolute dream. The bike was perfect.”
Full report to follow soon.