The delayed opening to the 2010 Isle of Man TT delivered an edge of the seat thriller as racing finally got under way around the Mountain course.
After a delay of more than three hours, caused by sea mist rolling in from the coast, the opening race of the 2010 Isle of Man TT more than made up for the waiting fans had endured.
The six-lap PokerStars Superbike had been billed as one of the most mouth-watering showdowns seen at the TT in recent years, and it lived up to the anticipation.
John McGuinness, the 15-times winner and outright lap record holder, Suzuki by TAS Racing teammates Bruce Anstey and Cameron Donald, the luckless Guy Martin and Padgetts Honda rider Ian Hutchinson were expected to battle it out over the 37.73-mile circuit for honours.
But over the opening laps there was only one man to beat - Manxman Conor Cummins on the McAdoo Kawasaki.
Cummins seemingly had the race in the bag and after a stunning opening lap of 131.511mph, just a whisker outside the outright lap record, had a commanding 21 second lead at the end of the fourth lap. However, Cummins stalled during his second pit stop at the end of that lap and saw his leading over the chasing Hutchison slashed to just 4 seconds.
He got out of the pits, but just minutes later retired with mechanical problems at Laurel Bank, ending his hopes of a first TT win and breaking hearts all around his native Island.
Cummins joined McGuinness in retirement. The Morecambe racer had taken an early lead on lap one, just 0.8 of a second ahead of Cummins at Glen Helen, but retired the HM Plant Honda at Sulby.
The retirement of McGuinness left Cummins to forge ahead with his ferocious pace. The stunning opening lap of 131.511mph, from a standing start, gave him an 8 second lead over Hutchinson with Martin, Adrian Archibald, Dan Stewart and Ian Lougher close behind.
Australian Donald seemed to be out of the reckoning after overshooting at the Nook and lost a lot of time, rejoining the circuit in 13th at the end of the first lap.