Road Racing News

TT 2019: Johnston Joins TT Winners Circle, Completes International Road Racing’s ‘Triple Crown’

Pulsating competition, gripping battles, numerous lead changes and the good old unpredictable weather made yesterday evening’s opening Monster Energy Supersport encounter, one to remember.

The full round up of each twist and turn of a race, ultimately decided after just two laps, is as follows:

Lap 1:

Just 4.9 seconds, yes you heard that right covered the top 8 competitors at Glen Helen, with James Hillier slotting into an early lead, just 1.367 clear of Ashcourt Racing’s Lee Johnston, Gary Johnson moved into third, as Dean Harrison, PreZ Racing’s Jamie Coward and Michael Dunlop completed the top six.

Hillier upped the race lead to 1.691 at Ballaugh Bridge, but by Ramsey Hairpin the lead was trimmed down to under 0.7 of a second, as seven times International Road Race winner Johnston got the hammer down.

By the Bungalow, Johnston was the race leader by 1.27 seconds, which extended to 2.7 seconds at Cronk Ny Mona. Come the completion of lap 1, Johnston’s lead stood at a slightly reduced distance of 1.9 seconds.

Photo by Mark Corlett

Second placed Hillier who had briefly dropped behind RST Superbike winner Hickman, was just over 1.9 seconds in front of the factory supported Triumph racer.

Three seconds behind Hickman in fourth place was RAF Regular & Reserves supported Johnson, Silicone Engineering Racing’s Harrison occupied fifth, 18 times TT winner Dunlop held sixth, with just 12 and a half seconds covering the top six.

Photo by Nick Wheeler

Lap 2:

3.94 seconds clear at Glen Helen, popular race leader Johnston continued to set on lap two, an impressive, accomplished, consistent pace.

By Ballaugh though, the battle for race honours was very much back on, as Hillier got Johnston’s advantage down to just 0.656 of a second.

0.7 ahead at Ramsey Hairpin, Johnston pulled clear of Hillier at the Bungalow and at Cronk Ny Mona, and by the end of lap two, held a 3.64 second advantage.

TROOPER Triumph mounted Hickman remained in third place, and was only 1.326 behind Hillier, whilst fourth place was held by Ulster GP lap record holder Harrison.

With rain reported at areas such as Rhencullen around the Mountain Course, it wasn’t to surprising to see Clerk of The Course make the decision to call the opening Supersport race, after two laps.

This meant that Ashcourt Racing’s Lee Johnston joined for the first time, the TT winners circle. Now an eight times International Road Race winner, Johnston has joined a select group of competitors to have completed International Road Racing’s ‘Triple Crown’, scooping victories at the North West 200, Ulster GP and now TT Races.

Declared race runner up Hillier, although obviously a bit disappointed to not double his TT wins tally, was full of praise for new TT champion Johnston.

Smiths Racing’s Hickman finalised the podium finishers, whilst 4th, 5th, 6th sixth place finishes were clinched respectively by Harrison, Dunlop and Milenco by Padgett’s Conor Cummins.

2011, 2014 Supersport TT champ Gary Johnson placed seventh, PreZ Racing’s Jamie Coward banked eighth as Davey Todd and Ian Hutchinson concluded the top ten finishers.

Outside of the aforementioned competitors, others to acquire impressive results included Derek Sheils (11th), Paul Jordan (12th), Davies Motorsport’s Dominic Herbertson (13th), Xavier Denis (18th) and Manx GP graduate Michael Browne (20th).

Monster Energy Supersport TT Race 1 result, is as follows:

1 Lee Johnston
2 James Hillier
3 Peter Hickman
4 Dean Harrison
5 Michael Dunlop
6 Conor Cummins
7 Gary Johnson
8 Jamie Coward
9 Davey Todd
10 Ian Hutchinson
11 Derek Sheils
12 Paul Jordan
13 Dominic Herbertson
14 David Johnson
15 Michael Sweeney
16 Sam West
17 John McGuinness
18 Xavier Denis
19 Horst Saiger
20 Michael Browne
21 Michal Dokoupil
22 Darren Cooper
23 Adrian Harrison
24 Rob Hodson
25 Frank Gallagher
26 Julian Trummer
27 Richard Charlton
28 Jim Hodson
29 Raul Torras Martinez
30 Michael Booth
31 Tom Weeden
32 Mike Norbury
33 Davy Morgan
34 Miroslav Sloboda
35 Rob Whittall
36 Dave Hewson
37 Jonathan Perry
38 Ray Casey
39 Josh Daley
40 Morgan Govignon
41 Sam Johnson
42 Paul Williams
43 Dave Moffitt
44 Justin Collins
45 Richard Wilson
46 Matt Mylchreest
47 Nicolas Pautet
48 David Datzer

Words by Stevie Rial

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