Monday brings us the first of the two Monster Energy Supersport TT races at the 2014 Isle of Man TT — though just barely, as isolated showers first delayed the start and nearly cut its ending short. Thankfully though, all four laps of the Supersport TT race were held, and great racing ensued for the fans who braved the weather.
From the word go, it was a battle between Gary Johnson and Bruce Anstey, as the pair swapped the leader position, with only a couple seconds separating the two riders leading up to the second lap. A close margin continued between Johnson and Anstey, and the pair quickly dropped Michael Dunlop and Dean Harrison on the stopwatch during their efforts
Heading up the mountain though, it seemed like Johnson was going to breakaway, putting two seconds into Anstey, who had been leading. Coming to the end of the lap though, and entering the Grandstand for the mid-race pit stop, Anstey clawed back some of that time as Johnson’s crew fumbled to get their rider out quickly. Getting a one-second advantage over Johnson, the battle continued as they started the third lap.
At the split in Glen Helen though, it was Johnson again in the lead, and he never looked back. Though Anstey would come to within 0.111 seconds of Johnson (Anstey lead physically on the race course), Johnson would maintain his position, with a nail-biter finish and 1.5 second advantage.
With spots of rain, especially on the Mountain section, Anstey commented after the race that he was surprised things continued after the third lap, and both riders made note of how sketchy the conditions were, especially at The Mountain Mile.
Because of the rain, the Superstock TT race was not held. This meant that Michael Dunlop would have to remain content with the day and his third-place finish. Fourth place went to Dean Harrison, who had an impressive run on his Martrain Yamaha.
Unfortunately with the first race of the Monster Energy Supersport TT, the 2014 Isle of Man TT has claimed the life of competitor, Bob Price. A veteran of the TT and other road racing events, the 65-year-old from Stroud, Gloucester crashed near Ballaugh. Our thoughts are with Price’s friends and family.