Ian Hutchinson seals superb Isle of Man TT hat-trick
Ian Hutchinson wrote another chapter in the remarkable story of his return to the pinnacle of TT racing by sealing a hat-trick of wins at this year's event.
The Yorkshireman won the second Supersport event on Wednesday to add to his earlier victories in the first 600cc race and the Superstock class.
Hutchinson, 35, won by 14 seconds from New Zealander Bruce Anstey, with Guy Martin a further 17 seconds behind.
He joins Michael Dunlop, Steve Hislop and Phillip McCallen on 11 TT wins.
The Bingley man now has more 600c victories than any other rider over the 37.73-mile Mountain Course.
Hutchinson, who underwent 30 operations after being involved in a horror crash at Silverstone five years ago, took control of the race on the opening lap and gradually extended his lead over Anstey.
The former Macau Grand Prix winner set the fastest lap of the race at 127.751mph on his Team Traction Control Yamaha on his second circuit.
"The lads put a brand new engine in the bike and it went like a dream.
"On the third lap I tried to give the bike a bit of care and back off slightly but then the gap came down to eight seconds and I had to up the pace again.
"For Keith Flint and his team to put this bike together for me at short notice just a week before the event is fantastic," said an elated Hutchinson.
Team boss, Prodigy frontman Flint, described the last lap of the race as "the longest 17 minutes of my life".
|Most wins in all solo classes|
|11||Michael Dunlop, Steve Hislop, Phillip McCallen, Ian Hutchinson|
|10||Giacomo Agostini, Ian Lougher, Stanley Woods, Bruce Anstey|
|9||David Jefferies, Charlie Williams|
"We all know where Ian has come from. He has shown true grit and I'm so proud to be a part of his incredible comeback.
"We put this together in a matter of weeks and this means more to me than I could ever imagine. I don't have the words to say what it means to the team."
Hutchinson, who became the only man to win five TT races in a week in 2010, has the chance to continue his astonishing run in Friday's Senior race.
English riders James Hillier and Gary Johnson were fourth and fifth respectively, with Northern Ireland's Lee Johnston sixth.