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Ian Hutchinson took a fairytale victory in the opening TT Supersport race on Monday evening when he came home 7.7 seconds clear of New Zealand’s Bruce Anstey, reversing the result of Sunday’s RST Superbike race, with Gary Johnson in third.

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It was Hutchinson’s ninth TT win and completed his comeback from the career threatening leg injuries he suffered at the end of 2010, the year he won all five solo races.

The riders enjoyed perfect conditions for the 6.30pm start and it was Johnson who led at Glen Helen on the opening lap by just over two seconds from teammate Dean Harrison. He in turn was only half a second ahead of Hutchinson who was almost dead level with James Hillier. Anstey and Lee Johnston filled out the remaining top six places.

By Ramsey, Johnson had eked out a further half second but Hutchinson was up to second, half a second clear of Harrison who was leading on the roads having already overhauled John McGuinness. Anstey had taken over fourth from Hillier with Johnston holding on to sixth whilst Guy Martin was on the move and was now up to seventh.

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Hutchinson was making a move though and, having closed to within two tenths of a second at the Bungalow, his opening lap of 126.400mph saw him lead Johnson by 0.77s. Anstey was a further two seconds back in third ahead of Harrison, Johnston and Martin, Hillier dropping back to seventh.

Glen Helen on lap two and Hutchinson’s lead was now over two seconds but it was Anstey who was now in second as Johnson slipped back to third albeit only seventh tenths of a second behind. Harrison was out though having retired at Crosby Crossroads with Michael Dunlop, down in 12th after the first lap, doing the same at Kirk Michael.

Hutchinson continued to edge away as Anstey and Johnson almost matched each other all the way round, their times almost equal at both Ramsey Hairpin and the Bungalow timing points. Martin was also increasing his pace as just over ten seconds covered the top four but ninth placed Keith Amor tipped off at Stella Maris fortunately without injury.