Isle of Man TT legend John McGuinness enjoyed a successful return to short circuit racing as the National Superstock 1000 Championship hit Scotland.
McGuinness, who claimed his 18th and 19th wins at the 2012 Isle of Man TT fuelled by Monster Energy, qualified 9th and finished 6th in Sunday’s 24-lap race at Knockhill.
The Morecambe star was delighted to make a competitive return to short circuit racing after the intense two weeks of road racing at the TT.
“I'm well pleased with today's result and after two hard weeks of racing at the TT, this weekend has required a totally different mindset but one which I've been able to immediately get dialled back into.”
“Short circuit racing is all stop, start and cut and thrust and with a good start and some aggressive early laps, I was able to move up the order and run at a pace very close to that of the leaders. I settled down into a good rhythm only to have a slight moment at the hairpin and that was all it took to lose the tow to the leading pack.”
“After that, I was literally on my own and riding to my pit boards so all I needed was a few trees, walls and bumpy roads to make it like the TT.”
With good conditions at the 1.27-mile circuit, a great start by Padgetts Honda-mounted McGuinness saw him immediately jump up the order and he completed the first lap in a strong 7th. He stayed there for the first third of the race, but lost time when he had a nasty slide at the hairpin, putting him three seconds adrift of the leading group. However, he was more than five seconds clear of the riders behind and completed the rest of the race racing on his own.
When Jason O'Halloran crashed out on lap nine, McGuinness was promoted up the order to 6th and completed the race to take 10 championship points.
“I qualified 9th and finished in 6th so have got to be happy with that and equally pleasing was the fact that I was competitive in both the wet and dry. It was a lonely ride on one hand, but also very enjoyable on the other and, like I say, to be running a pace similar to that of the championship contenders shows I'm riding as well as ever.”
“I always enjoy riding the bike and always enjoy riding for Clive and his team so to get a top six finish has made it a great weekend for all of us.”
McGuinness will attend this weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed alongside other motorsport greats.