Morecambe’s John McGuinness ended his 2013 Isle of Man TT campaign with a superb win in Friday’s Senior race, taking his 20th TT win and 41st podium in total, the latter the highest total ever achieved in the history of the event. The Honda TT Legends rider was in imperious form around the Mountain Course once more and eventually ran out the victor by 10.1s from team-mate Michael Dunlop.
The initial race, which got underway at 1.00pm, was red flagged after a racing incident and so the race was re-run at the later time of 4.30pm and it was Dunlop who led from John at the end of the opening lap, the gap between the duo just 1.4s. There was little to choose between the team-mates in the early stages but a lap of 131.272mph gave the Morecambe Missile a 2.3s lead at the end of the second lap as the riders came in for their first pit stop.
John’s pit crew again excelled at the stop and with another 131mph+ lap on the fourth lap, his lead went up to six seconds and it gave him the breathing space he needed. Circulating at high speed on the roads with Kawasaki rider James Hillier, John added another four seconds to his lead in the final two laps and he was able to come for his sixth Senior race victory, one less than the great Mike Hailwood but one more than Italian legend Giacomo Agostini.
Speaking later, a delighted John said, “It feels absolutely fantastic to win again and if there’s one race to win, it’s the Senior. 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 and I’ve never known a reception like it all the way round the course. I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many fans lining the roadside and the Island really is an amazing place. I couldn’t have asked for a better day and the job’s a dream!”
It’s now back to National Superstock 1000cc Championship duty for John with the next round taking place at Knockhill, Scotland on June 14-16.
Picture by Mark Walters