John McGuinness has strengthened his status as one of the most successful road racers of all time by claiming a 16th Isle of Man TT race win in the Superbike category.
The Honda TT Legends rider diced for victory with Bruce Anstey until the latter retired midway through the race, McGuinness coming away with a substantial lead of almost a minute over Cameron Donald, while Gary Johnson rounded out the podium.
McGuinness had come into the race behind Anstey on the practice timesheets, but with barely anything between the pair, their battle resumed in racing conditions as the margins ebbed and flowed over the first three laps.
Indeed, despite a fairly slow start behind McGuinness and Johnson, Anstey was back up to second place and charging as the opening lap drew to a close. Indeed, the Padgetts Honda rider would nose ahead on lap two, commanding a lead of three seconds as they made their first pit stops.
A fast turnaround by the Honda TT Legends team – which has been practicing in the Endurance World Championship this year – would see McGuinness come out with a twelve second advantage over Anstey. However, Anstey's efforts to reduce the gap would be scuppered shortly afterwards when he retired at Quarry Bends.
It meant McGuinness had a healthy lead over second, being disputed by Johnson and Guy Martin. Though Johnson held firm initially, Martin surged ahead on lap four, while a further penalty for Johnson dropped him back even further.
However, Martin's dreams of at least making it into the podium for Relentless by TAS Suzuki were ended when he hit problems and retired. Donald was subsequently promoted to second, ahead of Johnson, a position he held right to the end.
Off the podium, Keith Amor bounced back from his shoulder injury to claim fourth on the second Honda TT Legends bike, ahead of Michael Dunlop. In all, Hondas would fill the top four.