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AUSTRALIAN DONALD WINS FIRST TT IN DAINESE SUPERBIKE THRILLER

Author: Press Office
Posted on: Saturday, May 31 2008



With bright, sunny weather bathing the Island, conditions were ideal for racing but their was confusion at the start and Guy Martin was delayed getting to the line. He missed his starting slot by almost 9 seconds before getting underway. Conor Cummins and John McGuinness were also delayed before everything got back on track and their delay clearly showed at Glen Helen as it was Ian Hutchinson who led from Donald, Anstey, Ryan Farquhar, McGuinness and Martin. However, as the lap progressed, Martin was getting into his rhythm on the Hydrex Bike Animal Honda and he took the lead with an opening lap of 129.103mph to lead McGuinness by almost 4 seconds with Donald, Anstey, Hutchinson and Farquhar not far behind.

The drama continued on the 2nd lap when McGuinness was late at Glen Helen but he eventually arrived, pulling in with a misfire. He got going again but the problem returned and he called it a day at Sulby Crossroads. Martin now had more breathing space and with a second lap of 129.540mph, the fastest of the race, his lead was up to over ten seconds. The Lincolnshire rider controlled the race from his signals until the 4th lap when he was reported as being missing at Ramsey Hairpin. News came through that he too had retired at Sulby whilst early pace setter Hutchinson was also out near Union Mills with Cummins following on the 4th lap at Keppel Gate.

The two TAS Suzukiís were flying though, circulating together on the road and although Anstey tried to break away, he soon realized it was a forlorn task and he tucked in behind Donald for the rest of the race. The Aussie, in only his third TT, was lapping at the 129mph mark and the duo crossed the line almost together although it was Donald who prevailed over his Antipodean rival by 10.77 seconds with a new race record of 1hr 47m05.89s, 126.82mph. It was not only his first win, but also Australiaís first since Graeme McGregor won the 1984 Junior TT.

Archibald, 9th on the first lap, worked his way through the field with his fastest ever TT lap to finish 3rd, his first podium for three years, firmly silencing his critics. Gary Johnson, one of last yearís best newcomers, rode brilliantly on his Honda to take 4th with Ian Lougher finally getting the better of Farquhar, on his Superstock machine, for fifth.

Keith Amor took 7th ahead of an excellent ride by Dan Stewart in 8th with the top 12 being completed by Carl Rennie, Steve Plater, Mark Parrett and Les Shand. Incidents were reported for Stephen McKnight at the Bungalow and Thomas Shoenfelder at Sarahís but neither was believed to be serious.


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