Michael Dunlop stormed to a dominant victory in Monday’s opening Monster Energy Supersport race at the 2017 Isle of Man TT.
After overnight rainfall, the original race time of 10:45 was pushed back to the afternoon, with just minor damp patches reported on the 37.73-mile course as riders set off at 13:00 local time.
While JG Speedfit Kawasaki’s James Hillier took an early lead, Dunlop had gained the number one spot by Ramsey on the opening lap. Hillier took it back briefly at the end of lap one but Dunlop would begin to pull the pin as they moved onto their first flier.
Hillier pulled Dunlop back in after a strong pit stop but it wouldn’t last for long as the Ulsterman put the hammer down on lap three to extend his lead to six seconds.
William Dunlop occupied the final podium spot for the opening two laps for IC Racing Yamaha, but he was soon reeled in by the Smiths Trooper Triumph of Peter Hickman who took third from the elder Dunlop brother half way around the penultimate lap.
By the end of the race, the gap between Dunlop at the front and Hillier in second had extended to a whopping 13.2 seconds, while Hickman crossed the line in a safe third place, 9.247 seconds ahead of William Dunlop in fourth.
Ian Hutchinson, who has won the last four 600cc TT races, was fifth ahead of Gary Johnston and Bruce Anstey. Local man Dan Kneen took eighth despite a 60 second penalty for speeding in pit lane. Conor Cummins was ninth with James Cowton rounding out the top ten.
Honda Racing’s Guy Martin was a non-starter for the four lap race after his crash in Sunday’s Superbike race.
MONSTER ENERGY SUPERSPORT TT RACE 1
- Michael Dunlop – MD Racing Carl Cox Yamaha
- James Hillier – JG Speedfit Kawasaki +13.244
- Peter Hickman – Smiths Trooper Triumph +12.768 (to Hillier)
- William Dunlop – IC Racing Yamaha +9.427
- Ian Hutchinson – McAMS Yamaha +26.128
- Gary Johnson – Reactive Parts Triumph +11.033
- Bruce Anstey – Padgetts Racing Honda +26.768
- Dan Kneen – Jackson Racing Honda +8.663
- Conor Cummins – Padgetts Racing Honda +15.111
- James Cowton – McAdoo Racing Kawasaki +10.333
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