Road Racing News

Bruce Almighty Conquers RST Superbike TT

The 2015 RST superbike TT began in near perfect conditions around the mountain course.

First timing point on lap 1 at Glen Helen saw Ian Hutchinson surge into race lead but by only 0.2 of a second over Bruce Anstey with James Hillier in third place only half a second behind race leader Hutchinson.

By Ballaugh Bridge James Hillier went into race lead but by only 0.398 of a second over Ian Hutchinson with Bruce Anstey now holding third position.

At Ramsey Hairpin Hillier maintained race lead by 0.433 of a second over Anstey now into second position with Hutchinson dropping to third.

By the Bungalow Bruce Anstey became the third different leader of the race hitting the front by 0.351 of a second over James Hillier with Ian Hutchinson only 0.2 back on Hillier in third.

At Cronk Ny Mona Ian Hutchinson was back into race lead as the Paul Bird Motorsport rider leaped into over 1 second advantage over Bruce Anstey with James Hillier holding third place and Michael Dunlop carrying fourth place as he built up his pace on Buildbase backed S1000RR BMW.

As end of lap 1 beckoned race fans around the most famous road racing circuit in the world where eagerly awaiting who held race lead. It was Ian Hutchinson on the Paul Bird Motorsport ZX10R Kawasaki lapping close to the 131 mph mark.

Hutchy held an advantage of 1.2 over Bruce Anstey, James Hillier after an ultra strong opening lap held third place as Michael Dunlop, John McGuinness, Gary Johnson rounded out the top six.

Onto lap two and at Glen Helen Hutchinson’s lead increased to 1.610 seconds over James Hillier who moved back into second place as Bruce Anstey was under 0.2 of a second behind Hillier.

Positions throughout lap two amongst the leading trio remained largely the same but Michael Dunlop was on a charge keeping pace with the leaders whilst John McGuinness was showing his undoubted class on Honda Racing superbike.

By the end of lap two Ian Hutchinson held almost 4.5 second advantage over Bruce Anstey as James Hillier in third continued to impress hugely on Quattro Plant backed ZX10R Kawasaki.

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After pit stops on lap two Hutchinson remained in race lead by 4.448 seconds over Bruce Anstey with Hillier and Dunlop continuing to keep close attention.

Lap three beckoned and it would prove to be another highly productive lap of the mountain course for Ian Hutchinson.

The eight times TT winner was at his imperious best as he stretched out race lead to 5.801 seconds at Ballaugh Bridge over Bruce Anstey.

TT lap record holder Anstey was on a mission though and by the Bungalow had lowered the lead gap to 5.355 seconds. James Hillier was still in third but coming under huge pressure from a determined Michael Dunlop.

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Photo by Rod Neill

End of lap three saw Ian Hutchinson hold a now reduced lead of 4.796 seconds over a very much on form Bruce Anstey, Michael Dunlop moved into third place, James Hillier held fourth position, John McGuinness was fifth and Honda Racing team mate Conor Cummins held sixth place.

Lap four would see Anstey pile the pressure on race leader Hutchinson. At Glen Helen, Ballaugh Bridge, Ramsey Hairpin the nine times TT winner picked up a solid amount of time on Paul Bird Motorsport rider.

By the time Hutchinson and Anstey made the Bungalow the lead out front was now down to 1.334 seconds.

As lap four drew to a conclusion Ian Hutchinson’s lead was just 0.289 of a second over Bruce Anstey, pit stops would prove crucial.

Lap four would also see Conor Cummins drop out of the race as he retired at Kirk Michael.

This was to prove the case as Anstey enjoyed a top class pit stop as he went into race lead by 1 second over Hutchinson, Michael Dunlop still held third place, James Hillier was fourth and John McGuinness remained a solid fifth.

The start of lap five proved to be a quite brilliant one for Bruce Anstey. The 29 times international road race winner now held an extended race lead of 2.429 seconds over Ian Hutchinson.

Michael Dunlop was twenty two seconds back in third, James Hillier fourth and John McGuinness battling away in fifth.

Gap out front was down to 1.9 seconds at Ballaugh Bridge but from here for the rest of the lap Bruce Anstey showed his proven world class pure road racing pedigree.

By the Bungalow he held a 4.470 advantage over Ian Hutchinson who maintained a comfortable gap over third placed Michael Dunlop.

End of lap five saw Anstey’s lead up to 5.3 seconds over 17 times international road race winner Hutchinson with Dunlop holding onto third as James Hillier remained in fourth.

Final lap of the race beckoned and for either Bruce Anstey or Ian Hutchinson it would be a very much well deserved race victory.

Despite the gap out front going down to 4.089 seconds by Glen Helen, Anstey was proving once again why he is one of the most naturally talented pure road racers of the last twenty years as he built up his advantage as race leader to 5.596 seconds at Ballaugh Bridge.

Ramsey Hairpin and the Bungalow saw the Valvoline Racing by Padgetts Motorcycles rider’s race lead grow and grow to now 6.408 seconds.

After going through Cronk Ny Mona Bruce Anstey was now not far away from securing a hugely popular race win.

He crossed the line at the end lap six to record his tenth TT victory by almost 11 seconds, his first superbike race win at TT Races and set a new race record for the superbike class.

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Finishing a superb second was Ian Hutchinson who is back to where he belongs pushing for big bike races at the most famous road race in the world.

There was drama though on final lap for Michael Dunlop who crashed out of third place at the Nook, although limping across the grandstand the 11 times TT winner looks ok.

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His accident allowed ZX10R Kawasaki mounted James to secure a quite sensational third place finish, this is James first superbike podium finish at TT Races.

Sealing fourth place finish was Honda Racing’s John McGuinness who produced a highly accomplished display whilst Tyco BMW’s William Dunlop finished a more than creditable fifth.

Penz 13.com Bathams by BMW Motorrad’s Michael Rutter was sixth, Dan Kneen an excellent seventh, Briggs Equipment BMW’s Peter Hickman a tremendous eighth, Lee Johnston a solid ninth whilst David Johnson competing on Smiths Racing S1000RR BMW finalised the top ten finishers.

Jamie Hamilton continued his impressive TT 2015 form with personal best superbike finish of 11 position whilst Steve Mercer, Dan Hegarty, Russ Mountford, Dan Cooper all sealed top 15 finishes.

Alan Bonner on the peoples bike team ZX10R Kawasaki produced a fine performance to finish 16th as Cameron Donald on the Norton finished a respectable 18th.

Sam West piloting Homer Racing ZX10R Kawasaki finished a fine 24th whilst Shaun Anderson finished a highly creditable 21st.

What can one say about Bruce Anstey, at 46 years old he’s won his first superbike TT to add to his already glittering real road racing record.

Following his superbike TT triumph Bruce joins an elite group of riders to have been victorious more than ten times at TT Races.

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Plus this race win is his 30th international road race triumph, a quite brilliant record for the Isle of Man TT lap record holder.

One Comment

  1. Terry Reed

    June 8, 2015 at 5:00 am

    Our own Bruce Anstey reminding the world that Kiwis can fly !! Awesome stuff Bruce !!

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