2015 Isle of Man TT RST Superbike Results
Not unusual for the tiny island lost in the Irish Sea, rains and winds played the largest role so far in the 2015 Isle of Man TT.
The inclement conditions caused the cancellation of Monday and Tuesday practice, though the riders were able to get in some decent practice/qualifying laps Wednesday through Friday.
One rider who led two of these days – Valvoline Padgetts Honda’s Bruce Anstey – was an immediate favorite for the opening of nine races – the RST Superbike TT. The race was originally scheduled for Saturday, but gale-force winds prevented any action on the 37.73-mile Mountain Course. The winds – especially in the mountain section – would not allow any medical helicopters to fly, causing all action to cease.
And Anstey – who set the outright Isle of Man TT lap record during last year’s Dainese TT with a 132.298mph – delivered. The 45-year-old Honda CBR1000RR pilot took the lead after lap four of six, and went on to earn his 10th TT victory, which was his first in a Superbike class.
Joining Anstey on the RST Superbike TT podium was another favorite, PBM Kawasaki’s Ian Hutchinson. Anstey’s final lap was an impressive 131.797mph, allowing him to finish 10.9 seconds ahead of Hutchinson, who earned his first TT podium since 2010 when he swept all five solo TTs.
Michael Dunlop, who switched from Yamaha YZF-R1 to BMW S1000RR machinery on Wednesday, was in place to take the final podium position. But the 11-time TT winner – the nephew of the late Joey Dunlop who has the record of 26 TT wins – got tangled with a slower rider at the Nook, and crashed, causing a red flag.
This allowed Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s James Hillier to finish third, who earned his first Superbike TT podium.
As for the Americans, Splitlath EBR’s Mark Miller suffered a DNF after losing the gas cap on his EBR1190RX. Bimota’s Brandon Cretu also suffered a DNF after his fairing brackets had broken, ultimately preventing him from continuing.
Following a three-minute delay, the 72-rider grid began the usual staggered start at 2:30 p.m. GMT, each rider leaving the line 10 seconds after each other. After six laps, only 45 would finish.
By Glen Helen, Hutchinson already had a 0.2 of a second led on Anstey, and Hillier slotted into third. TYCO BMW’s Guy Martin – another RST Superbike favorite – had some bike issues, and was stopped at Ballagarey. Martin – a fan favorite with Valentino Rossi status at the TT – would not finish, blowing any chances of winning his debut TT.
By Ramsey, Hillier took over the lead by a half second, and Hutchinson was on his way toward the front. Hutchinson then posted an opening lap of 130.959mph, which placed him ahead of Anstey and Hillier. Behind, Dunlop, 21-time TT winner John McGuinness (Team Honda) and Gary Johnson (GB Moto Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R) filled the top six.
Hutchinson continued his speed, posting a 130.901 mph on the second lap. He led by nearly five seconds ahead of Anstey as the riders came in for the first pit stop. Hillier maintained third, followed by Michael Dunlop, Johnson, Honda’s Conor Cummins and TYCO BMW’s William Dunlop.
Hutchinson and Anstey continued to lead out front, but Michael Dunlop was on a charge and into third. Hillier fell to fourth, followed by McGuinness and Cummins.
On the fourth lap, Anstey posted a 131.333mph, and caught up with Hutchinson before the second and final pit. Anstey was 0.2 of a second behind, but by the time he entered Glen Helen, he was over 2.5 seconds ahead.
Anstey continued his charge, and continually pulled a gap on Hutchinson. On the final lap, Anstey posted the quickest lap of the RST Superbike TT with a 131.797mph. He finished ahead of Hutchinson as Michael Dunlop crashed out, causing a red flag.
Hillier crossed the line in third, ahead of McGuinness, William Dunlop and Penz13.com BMW’s Michael Rutter. Due to the red flag, no other riders completed the entire race distance. This meant riders from seventh on were placed according to their times at the end of lap five.
Rounding out the top 10 were Valvoline Padgetts Honda’s Dan Kneen, Briggs Equipment UK BMW’s Peter Hickman, East Coast Construction BMW’s Lee Johnston and Smith Racing BMW’s David Johnson.
As for crashes, Johnson wrecked at Guthries on the final lap, but is fit for Monday’s races. The IOM TT also reports that Andy Lawson was flown to Nobles with neck and arm injuries after an accident at Guthries, while Scott Wilson, who was the other rider involved in the accident at the Nook with Michael Dunlop, was also flown to Nobles; Wilson was reported to have a broken clavicle.
The 2015 Isle of Man TT action continues Monday with the first Supersport and Superstock races, and the rescheduled first Sidecar Race.
To view the entire results, visit 2015 Isle of Man TT RST Superbike Results.
Photos by Wayne Freestone
2015 Isle of Man TT RST Superbike Results Photo Gallery