Guy Martin says he can take consolation from the fact he pushed road racing legend John McGuinness hard during the 2011 Isle of Man TT concluding Senior TT race as he fell just short of a long-awaited maiden victory.
Though a reputed TT racer, Martin is yet to notch up a victory on the island, even if a move to the successful Relentless by TAS Suzuki outfit pre-season was seen as his best chance to break his duck.
However, though Martin was a persistent front runner throughout the week, he would instead leave the 2011 with four podiums from five races, but no race wins.
Still, Martin came close in the Senior TT, leading initially before being overhauled by a charging McGuinness, himself a 17-time TT winner. Finishing seven seconds behind his Honda rival, though Martin was disappointed not to get the victory, he was pleased with his overall scoresheet.
“I led the first couple of laps of a Senior TT so I can sleep happy,” he said. “We had great pit stops and I had the focus and drive, but that was as much as I could give out there. I hit all my apexes, got on the throttle when I should have and the only places I lost time was late in the race passing backmarkers, as it took me a bit of time getting back up to speed. By heck I couldn't believe the attention I got out there with people shouting and waving at me all around the circuit. I could actually hear it through my ear plugs!
“The job was really going all right and the bike never missed a beat so I'm a happy camper. I still haven't won one. I'm trying, but I'm glad I was able to push John and I'll just have to come back next year and beat him, wont I?”
Martin's efforts were also praised by team manager Philip Neill, who was impressed with Martin's conduct over the course of the week and pleased with the four podium finishes.
“What a fantastic end to a very successful TT for TAS Racing and all our sponsors,” he said. “I would personally like to thank each and every one of our sponsors, as without their support we just would not be here. Our objective in racing is always to try and win, however this is the TT and just to finish a race is an achievement in itself. So to come away with four podiums from five races and a second place in the Senior TT is very pleasing and testament to the effort put in by our whole team, the Suzuki machinery and of course Guy himself.
“It was one of the most exciting and close Senior TT races for some time and to hear the fans cheer for Guy when he was leading was unbelievable. Although it would have been great to have won, our consolation is a 131mph lap and being beaten by one of the greatest riders in TT history.
"We will now look forward to returning to our BSB campaign and selecting some further outings for Guy later in the season. After that we can prepare for next year's TT where we will work even harder at getting our hands on that Senior TT winner's trophy.”