TT: Michael Dunlop takes two from two with Supersport win
Michael Dunlop’s early dominance of the Isle of Man TT Races continued on Monday morning when he made it two wins from two in the first 4-lap Supersport race. Riding his own MD Racing Honda, technically supported by PTR, the 24-year old almost beat his own lap record with a second lap of 127.525mph and once he’d caught second placed rider Bruce Anstey on the roads, he was able to circulate with the Kiwi for the final two laps and take his fifth TT victory, matching the total of his late father Robert.
“I struggled a bit with the bike in the first few miles as it was all over the road but after that I just got my head down and gave it my all on that first lap,” said Dunlop afterwards. “I knew it was Bruce in second so once I’d caught him on the road on the second lap I knew what I had to do. We caught James Hillier, Cam Donald and John McGuinness so it was good craic out there but it also helped me stay focussed. The wee girl was spot on and it’s great to have taken my second win of the week and give PTR their first TT win too.”
It was brother William who made the early running, leading through Glen Helen on the opening lap by 1.6s from Anstey 1.6s with Michael a further 0.1s back. However, as the rest of the race unfolded, Michael turned his deficit into a lead and by the Grandstand, an opening lap of 126.431mph extended his lead to 4.2s. Anstey had moved back into second by two seconds with Cameron Donald in fourth, just ahead of Guy Martin and a flying Dean Harrison.
On the second lap, Dunlop went even faster, his lap of 127.525mph only a fraction outside his own lap record, and having now caught Anstey on the road, he could afford to sit with his fellow Honda rider for the second half of the race. William was still holding onto third although the rest of the leaderboard was shuffling somewhat with Martin up to fourth ahead of Donald, John McGuinness, Harrison, Gary Johnson on the MV Agusta and James Hillier.
As they left the solitary pit stop, Dunlop, Anstey, Donald, McGuinness and Hillier were together on the road giving the thousands of fans around the course a tremendous sight and the dice allowed the last two riders to not only overhaul Martin but also close in to Dunlop in third.
However, the Milwaukee Yamaha rider responded and with Michael and Anstey secure in first and second, he was able to take the final podium spot by over seven seconds. The result meant it was the first time the two siblings have shared a TT rostrum.
McGuinness took a strong fourth with Hillier having another excellent ride into fifth as he overhauled Martin on the final lap. Donald slipped back to seventh with Harrison, Dan Stewart and Dan Cooper rounding out the top ten.