Michael Dunlop made it two wins from two starts at the 2013 Isle of Man TT Races, fuelled by Monster Energy, when he took the opening Monster Energy Supersport race on Monday morning, the day after his stunning race win in the Dainese Superbike Race. Riding the MD Racing Honda, Dunlop took the lead at Ballaugh on the opening lap from brother William and with a 127.525mph lap on his second lap, he caught Bruce Anstey on the road and eventually took the win from the Kiwi by 10.3s.
With perfect conditions on the Island, the race got underway as scheduled at 10.45am and it was William Dunlop who led through Glen Helen on the opening lap, his advantage over Anstey 1.6s, with Michael a further 0.1s back. Indeed, it was tight all the way down the leaderboard with less than four seconds covering the top ten.
On the run to Ramsey though, Michael turned his deficit into a 1.5s lead, with Anstey now in third, a further 0.5s back from William but by the Grandstand, an opening lap of 126.431mph extended his lead to 4.2s. Anstey had moved back into second by two seconds with Cameron Donald in fourth, just ahead of Guy Martin and a flying Dean Harrison.
On the second lap, Dunlop pressed on and could now see Anstey ahead on the road, his lap of 127.525mph only a fraction outside his own lap record. The lead was now close to ten seconds with William still holding onto third although the rest of the leaderboard was shuffling somewhat with Martin up to fourth ahead of Donald, John McGuinness, Harrison, Gary Johnson on the MV Agusta and James Hillier.
As they left the solitary pit stop, Dunlop and Anstey were together and the pair of them had caught McGuinness, Donald and Hillier on the road giving the thousands of fans around the course a tremendous sight and the dice allowed the battle for fourth to go all the way to the line.
The top three positions were all but secure on the final lap, McGuinness giving William Dunlop a brief scare for third as he closed to within four and half seconds although the latter responded to take the final podium spot by over seven seconds.
It all meant Michael Dunlop took his fifth TT victory, equalling the total of his father Robert, with Anstey and William rounding out the podium, the first time the two siblings have shared a TT rostrum.
McGuinness took a strong fourth with Hillier having another excellent ride into fifth as he overhauled Martin on the final lap. Donald slipped back to seventh with Harrison, Dan Stewart and Dan Cooper rounding out the top ten.
Cooper’s tenth place made him the first privateer home ahead of Dan Kneen (11th) and Robert Wilson (13th) but Kneen has now taken over the lead in the overall TT Privateers Championship.