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McGuinness begins TT preparation with NW200 Superbike win

'The bike was fantastic and it might not be the fastest, but it's reliable and it's the best package out there' - John McGuinness
Honda TT Legends star John McGuinness marked his return to the Relentless International North West 200 after a year's absence with a sensational victory in the first Superbike race.

McGuinness, who missed the meeting a year ago to compete in a round of the Endurance World Championship, sealed a popular triumph on the CBR1000RR Fireblade to set himself up perfectly for next month's Isle of Man TT races.

The 40-year-old from Morecambe capitalised on a mistake by race favourite and pole-sitter Alastair Seeley, who ran wide at Church Corner on the second lap of six while holding a lead of over two seconds.

McGuinness took over and streaked away to established a commanding lead and although Seeley regrouped and powered his way through the field to apply some pressure on the final lap, it was 17-times Isle of Man TT winner McGuinness who took the chequered flag, with Cameron Donald on Wilson Craig's Honda snatching the final rostrum spot with a determined effort on the final lap.

McGuinness, who now has three Superbike wins to his name at the North West, said: “My last win was the last time I was here when I won the Superbike race in 2010. It's a great result for the Legends team and it's the first time I brought the bike here in the Legends colours.

“The bike was fantastic and it might not be the fastest, but it's reliable and it's the best package out there.

“It sets me up for next week going to the Isle of Man and I really enjoyed the race out there.

“Alastair may have been a bit faster than me but you've got to get to the chequered flag first."

Seeley rued his costly error on lap two, which he the British Superbike contender felt cost him victory on the 8.9-mile Triangle course.

“I hit a neutral and when I dropped it back into gear it upset the bike and I couldn't get stopped," he explained.

“I got it turned around but I hit another neutral at Juniper Hill and I said 'right, just smooth it all out' and I decided just to try and finish wherever I finished,” Seeley said.

“I can be disappointed with a podium."

Aussie Donald was a man on a mission on the final lap and passed both KMR Kawasaki's Ryan Farquhar and Michael Rutter on the MSS Bathams Kawasaki to secure the final podium place on Craig's Honda.

Rutter passed Farquhar for fourth, with Kiwi Bruce Anstey completing the leading six.

Tyco Suzuki's Guy Martin's crash in the first Supersport race ruled him out of the remainder of the action after he suffered a minor knock on the head.

Ian Hutchinson finished in 13th position on the Swan Yamaha R1 on his return to the North West following injury.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
John McGuinness on the Honda TT Legends Fireblade at the North West 200
Dean Harrison on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki in the Senior TT.
Peter Hickman in the Senior TT on the Smiths BMW.
Michael Dunlop on the Bennetts Suzuki in the Senior TT.
Bruce Anstey on his way to victory in the TT Zero race.
Guy Martin on the Honda Racing Superbike.
Jochem van den Hoek.
Michael Rutter took victory in the Lightweight TT on the Italian Paton.
Dan Kneen celebrates with his team after sealing his maiden Isle of Man TT rostrum in the Superstock race.
Ian Hutchinson celebrates his Superstock victory.
Ian Hutchinson on his way to victory in the Superstock TT on the Tyco BMW.
Davey Lambert in the RST Superbike race.
A Sidecar narrowly missed spectators in an incident that was captured in a video posted on YouTube.
James Hillier on the JG Speedfit Kawasaki in the opening Supersport TT race.
Michael Dunlop in the Supersport TT.
Michael Dunlop on his Yamaha in the Supersport TT.
Peter Hickman claimed his maiden podium at the Isle of Man TT with a runner-up finish in the RST Superbike race.
Michael Dunlop at the start of the RST Superbike race on the Bennetts Suzuki.

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Ian S - Unregistered

May 20, 2012 7:26 AM

If there's a nicer, more decent rider out there than McGuinness then I can't think who it is. Totally deserved his victory and I hope he can grab a few more at the TT.

cruachan - Unregistered

May 20, 2012 3:28 PM

Agreed Ian S, McG's obvious delight at taking a (single) win was in stark contrast to Seeley despite his three wins and three podiums. John will be the man to beat at the TT again, at least on the bigger bikes although he looked pretty racy on the 600 as well.

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