“It feels absolutely fantastic to win today and if there’s one race to win, it’s the Senior,” said McGuinness in a Honda T Legends press release. “I’ve had a good week but a win’s escaped me so do it today with the sun shining and thousands of fans waving me all the way is brilliant. The conditions were incredible, the bike was fantastic and with two superb pit stops we got the job done. I still feel really sharp and I hit all my apexes on the final lap so with a Honda 1-2-3, the job’s a dream!”
The Senior TT was delayed after a red-flag incident, which involved a rider crash and injuries to spectators. Once the course was cleared of emergency personnel and re-started, it appeared Dunlop was good for yet another TT victory – the Northern Ireland rider having claimed both Supersport wins, as well as the Superstock and opening Superbike races. Dunlop led the opening lap – followed by McGuinness and the fast-starting Gary Johnson, with the third TT Legends team rider, Michael Rutter, in fourth and Tyco Suzuki’s Guy Martin rounding out the top five.
McGuinness broke into the front position on the second circuit of the Mountain Course, turning a 131.272 mph lap. The early front-runner, Johnson, dropped out of the running on Lap 2 – the TT press office citing a “broken foot assembly” as cause. The disappointing result is Johnson’s third mechanical DNF of the TT week, the Englishman having placed runner up in Superstock and ninth in the second Supersport race.
Dunlop continued to follow McGuinness on the timing throughout, but lost time at both pit stops. On the final lap McGuinness maintained his advantage – en route to TT win number 20 and his 41st career TT podium. Dunlop fell 10 seconds short of sweeping all five TT races, a feat still claimed only by Ian Hutchinson in 2010.
“It was a good, enjoyable race and John rode lovely so fair play to him,” said Dunlop. “I had him in sight early on and there wasn’t much between us but I got held up a bit by backmarkers, catching them at the wrong times, and I lost a bit of time there and at the pit stops. No excuses though, the bike was mint and I’m going home with four wins and a second place so I can’t complain with how my week’s gone.”
The TT Legends duo took the top podium spots, but were outclassed on the final lap by Anstey – who peeled off the best lap of the day at 131.531 mph. The Kiwi’s final lap heroics were not enough to make up the 7.5-second differential to Dunlop, but it did poach the final podium position from Kawasaki rider James Hillier by a mere 0.978. Guy Martin retained his top-five result ahead of Rutter, the popular rider still winless at the TT.
The aforementioned red-flag incident involving rider Jonathan Howarth also injured 10 spectators. TT organizers released a statement confirming Howarth “sustained a minor fracture” from the crash. Injuries to the spectators ranged from “slight to serious but not life threatening.” Four injured spectators have already been released, with five remaining in the h
ospital and one “remains under observation in the emergency department.”
2013 Isle of Man Senior TT Results:
1. John McGuinness (Honda) 128.943 mph
2. Michael Dunlop (Honda) 128.737 mph
3. Bruce Anstey (Honda) 128.584 mph
4. James Hillier (Kawasaki) 128.565 mph
5. Guy Martin (Suzuki) 127.851 mph
6. Michael Rutter (Honda) 127.435 mph
7. William Dunlop (Yamaha) 126.716 mph
8. Dean Harrison (Kawasaki) 124.951 mph
9. Dan Stewart (Honda) 124.079 mph
10. David Johnson (Kawasaki) 123.966 mph