Padgetts Honda rider Bruce Anstey won the Monster Energy Supersport Race I at the Isle of Man Monday in a race that was first red-flagged, then shortened by one lap.
Padgetts Honda rider Bruce Anstey added another TT title to his impressive resume after winning the Monster Energy Supersport Race I Monday at the 2011 Isle of Man. The Kiwi rider was able to fend off the charge of Keith Amor by 8.39 seconds to secure the victory. Amor, whose participation was questionable after injuring his shoulder in a practice crash last Wednesday, would finish with a personal best at the Isle of Man in second place. Relentless by TAS Suzuki’s Guy Martin caught a lucky break when a race restart allowed him to reenter the contest after he slid off the course at Creg ny Baa, knocking him out of contention. Martin would return to grab the final spot on the Supersport TT podium.
After getting off to a clean start, the Supersport contest was red-flagged on Lap 2 after an accident at Gorse Lea, causing the race to be shortened to three laps instead of four. This allowed both Michael Dunlop, who retired from the race after one time battling for the lead, and Martin to restart the race.
Tragically, the red flag was for rider Derek Brien, 34, from Co. Meath in Ireland, who died in the high-speed accident at Gorse Lea. Brien, a seasoned road racer, first competed at the Isle of Man in 2007 and rode in both the 2009 and 2010 TT races.
On the restart, it was Cameron Donald and Michael Dunlop who early on looked like the men to beat. Donald jumped out to the lead before Dunlop upped his pace to claim the front spot with Anstey and East Coast Construction Honda’s Gary Johnson in hot pursuit. It didn’t take long for Dunlop to begin opening up a six-second gap on Donald in the first lap as he sped around the Mountain Course at an average speed of 125.852 mph.
Gary Johnson rolled the dice on a pit stop, giving him the lead temporarily. His gamble did not pay off in the long run, though, as Johnson just missed out on a podium spot to Guy Martin.
But a fuel stop after the first lap reshuffled the standings. Johnson was the benefactor, powering out to a 37-second lead early in the second lap, which only lasted until he had to make his own pit stop. Early leader Dunlop pitted at Ballig Bridge and to his disappointment, retired from the race. By the end of Lap 2, Johnson still lead the field, but a pack of riders led by Donald doggedly chased the frontrunner.
By Glen Helen, Donald had slipped into the lead, holding a slim four-second margin over Anstey. Amor was also riding strong, cutting down the gap on the leaders. Meanwhile, Johnson’s pit stop gamble backfired as he fell back to fifth place. Donald’s day soon took a turn for a worse as his bike suffered a mechanical at Kirk Michael and he was retired from the race.
Anstey capitalized on Donald’s misfortune by setting the fastest lap of the contest at 126.595 mph to win the race, followed by Amor and Martin. Johnson barely missed out on a podium spot after crossing the line 1.18 seconds behind Martin. Saturday’s Superbike TT winner, John McGuinness, rounded out the top five. McGuinness still holds the 2011 TT Championship lead with 36 points, three ahead of his Honda Legends TT teammate, Amor.
Competitor Ryan Farquhar has withdrawn for the 2011 Isle of Man TT due to injuries suffered in a fall at Keppel Gate during a practice round. Farquhar escaped without any broken bones but banged up his ribs and back and is too battered and bruised to be competitive at the ultra-demanding Isle of Man.
Monster Energy Isle of Man Supersport TT Race Results -
1. Bruce Anstey (Honda) 124.232 mph
2. Keith Amor (Honda) 123.916 mph
3. Guy Martin (Suzuki) 123.628 mph
4. Gary Johnson (Honda) 123.584 mph
5. John McGuinness (Honda) 123.538 mph
6. Dan Kneen (Yamaha) 122.902 mph
7. Ian Lougher (Kawasaki) 120.888 mph
8. Ben Wylie (Yamaha) 119.136 mph
9. Ian Mackman (Triumph) 118.590 mph
10. Daniel Stewart (Honda) 118.277 mph