John McGuinness claimed his 16th Isle of Man TT race victory as he took the opening win of the 2011 event in the Dainese Superbike race.
The 39-year-old was involved in a closely fought battle with leading qualifier Bruce Anstey, but when the Kiwi fell out, the path was clear for the Honda TT Legends star to take a comfortable victory.
The duo were just half a second apart as they set a searing pace on the opening lap of the race with both lapping over 130mph. This continued into the second lap and by this point they had a 13 second lead over the rest of the field, led by Guy Martin and Gary Johnson.
Anstey had the slight edge but a poor pitstop and his race would come to an end minutes later after his Padgetts Motorcycles Honda was reported to have stopped at Quarry Bends, promoting Martin and Johnson's battle into one for second.
Martin was given breathing space when Johnson was handed a 30 second penalty for speeding in the pitlane during his second pitstop, but the Relentless Suzuki rider's hard work was undone when he retired at Hillberry on lap five.
With his rivals encountering problems, McGuinness had an easy ride to the chequered flag on the last lap to take victory by the best part of a minute. Johnson's problems in the pits saw him lose second place to Australian rider Cameron Donald.
Keith Amor completed an excellent start to the week for Honda TT Legends by taking fourth place while Michael Dunlop saw off the challenge of Daniel Stewart and his brother William to finish fifth, despite losing two minutes in the pits.
James Hillier finished eighth ahead of Adrian Archibald with Ian Mackman completing the top ten. In doing so, the Kemtile Suzuki rider also took maximum points in the Privateers Championship.
There was disappointment for the experienced Michael Rutter who failed to complete the first lap on his Riders Bathams Ducati after retiring at Cruickshanks. Dan Kneen also failed to make it to the end of what was a troublesome race for the local hero. After pitting at the end of the first lap, the Marks Bloom Racing rider dropped to the back of the field and retired at the end of lap three.
2011 Isle of Man TT fuelled by Monster Energy – Dainese Superbike TT Race Result:
1. John McGuinness (Honda TT Legends) 1h46m13.40s
2. Cameron Donald (Wilson Craig Racing) +56.90
3. Gary Johnson (Lincs Lifting Ltd) +1:06.57
4. Keith Amor (Honda TT Legends) +1:49.96
5. Michael Dunlop (Street Sweep) +2:48.13
6. Daniel Stewart (Wilcock Consulting) +2:50.10
7. William Dunlop (Wilson Craig Racing) +2:51.94
8. James Hillier (Bournemouth Kawasaki) +3:47.61
9. Adrian Archibald (AMA Racing Team) +4:13.41
10. Ian Mackman (Kemtile) +5:34.91