Fairytale TT triumph for Ian Hutchinson after leg injury
Ian Hutchinson secured an emotional fairytale victory in Monday's first Supersport TT race on the Isle of Man.
The 35-year-old won on a Yamaha owned by Prodigy star Keith Flint's Traction Control team, with Superbike winner Bruce Anstey almost eight seconds back.
Hutchinson suffered a serious leg injury at Silverstone in 2010, just months after becoming the first rider to win five races in a week at the TT.
The Yorkshireman has since had in the region of 30 operations on the injury.
At the time of the accident, it was feared that Hutchinson may have to have his leg amputated, while his racing career at the top level looked to be over.
The Bingley rider entered the winner's enclosure to a hero's welcome after his sensational success, his ninth TT win in the class which gave him his first victory eight years ago.
"This is something very special - all the fans were waving at me around the circuit. I knew this day would come," said an elated Hutchinson.
"Most people thought I wouldn't be capable of running at the front again but this bike was an absolute dream to ride. I only secured this ride last week and everything went perfect."
The former Macau Grand Prix winner turned the tables on Anstey after finishing second behind the New Zealander in Sunday's Superbike six-lapper.
After that event, Hutchinson promised that "there was more to come" and so it proved as he equalled the tally of wins achieved by the late David Jefferies and Charlie Williams over the Mountain Course.
Early leader Gary Johnson took third place on the Mar-Train Yamaha, 17 seconds adrift of Anstey, with Northern Ireland's Lee Johnston recording his best-ever TT finish in fourth.
|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|
Smith's Triumph rider Guy Martin had to settle for fifth after being penalised 30 seconds for speeding in the pit-lane and Hampshire's James Hillier was sixth.
Hutchinson set the fastest lap of a race held in perfect conditions, at 127.57mph on his final circuit.
Michael Dunlop, suffering the effects of a crash in Sunday's 'big bike' race, retired at Kirk Michael on lap two while lying 11th, while Dean Harrison was forced to park up his Yamaha at Crosby crossroads on the same lap.
Keith Amor was reported to be "perfectly ok" after coming off at Stella Maris, while another fancied runner, William Dunlop was ruled out of this year's festival after suffering a broken rib and severe bruising in a practice crash.