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Steve Plater wins Junior TT

Author: Helen Pask
Posted on: Tuesday, Jun 03 2008

But after a post race scrutineering examination the winner, New Zealand’s Bruce Anstey was disqualified after officials ruled that the Relentless Tas Suzuki machine did not comply with the Camshaft lift regulations. Therefore Lincolnshire’s Steve Plater was declared the winner of the Junior TT in just his second year of competing at the Isle of Man TT races.

In the Superstock race, which got underway at 10.45am, Plater set off in 10th place but dropped down to 14th on the first 37.73mph-mile lap of the mountain course. But he soon got into his stride and was up to 11th as they came in to refuel at the end of lap two.

After a good pit stop Plater was quick to get back on track and completed the third lap in ninth position going on to finish the race in eighth position.

“That will do me,” said Plater. “I was 15th last year on my debut here so to move into the top 10 is a good result.”

The riders hardly had time to catch their breath before they returned to the collecting area for the start of the Relentless Supersport Junior TT again run over four laps of the gruelling mountain course.

In glorious sunshine and perfect conditions the race got underway at 1.15pm. Plater was quick to get away and was clocked through Glen Helen in seventh place to complete the first lap in the same position.

The AIM Yamaha pit crew did a slick job at the refuelling stop after the second lap and got Plater back out on the course in a very quick time, so much so that he immediately made up a further two places to slot into fifth place.

Lap three saw Plater make up ground to pass Ryan Farquhar on time to take up fourth place on lap three and then chase after Keith Amor who was holding the final podium position of third.

By the time the pair reached Glen Helen on the final lap, Plater was ahead and in third place. With half a lap remaining he was catching John McGuinness on time and a fast run from Ramsey to the Bungalow checkpoint saw him overhaul the multi TT winner to claim second place, which he held to the chequered flag.

Speaking at the post-race press conference Plater said: “I can’t believe that. We had one or two issues in practice and I gave my teammate Ian Hutchinson the best engine as he stood a good chance of actually winning the race. But I got my head down at the start and tried to be as smooth as possible.

“I had no idea I had finished second. I didn’t have any boards around the circuit but one of the Phase One guys waved their board at me to say I was P5 a couple of times and I thought that would be a good result.

“But then when I went through on my last lap it said P3 and I thought, flipping heck that’s good, and thought I had better try to be as smooth as possible to hang onto third. But then coming out of Ramsey and up May Hill I made a mistake on the approach to the hairpin so I was a bit cross with myself.

“All I wanted to do was keep it smooth over the mountain and bring it home in third so I couldn’t believe it when they ushered me into the second place spot.

“Its just awesome, my head is in a big snowball right now and I can’t believe what I have just done.”

But after the post race scrutineering test Anstey was disqualified and Steve pronounced the winner and is now even more amazed. “It was a surprise to find out I was second but now I have to take in the fact that I have actually won the race. It’s all too much for me to take on board right now. Today has been such an emotional rollercoaster I just need a bit of peace and quiet to realise exactly what has happened here today.”

But the peace and quiet wont happen yet a while as Plater now has to attend the awards ceremony tonight to receive his trophy and to face the gathered media for another round of interviews.

The second of the Supersport Junior TT races is set for Wednesday at 10.45am and the final race of the week for Plater will be the Dainese Senior TT event run over six laps starting at noon on Friday.

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