David Johnson wins Classic TT Superbike showpiece after late drama for race leader Michael Dunlop

RST Superbike Classic TT winner David Johnson with runner-up Derek Sheils (left) and James Hillier. PIcture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.
RST Superbike Classic TT winner David Johnson with runner-up Derek Sheils (left) and James Hillier. PIcture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.
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Michael Dunlop was cruelly denied his fourth victory in the Superbike Classic TT on Monday after retiring a few miles from the finish on the last lap.

Dunlop was holding a comfortable lead of 12 seconds over Australian rider David Johnson when he failed to arrive at Cronk-ny-Mona on the fourth and final lap.

David Johnson won the RST Superbike Classic TT on the Alasdair Racing Kawasaki. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

David Johnson won the RST Superbike Classic TT on the Alasdair Racing Kawasaki. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

It later emerged that he stopped at Hillberry on the 1100cc Team Classic Suzuki, gifting Johnson his first Classic TT victory.

The 37-year-old, who edged out Dunlop for third place to earn his first TT rostrum in the Superstock race in June, wrapped up victory by 41.2 seconds on the Alasdair Cowan Racing Kawasaki, with Dublin’s Derek Sheils sealing his first ever podium around the Mountain Course in second place.

Sheils pipped James Hillier for the runner-up spot by 1.5 seconds on the Greenall Racing Kawasaki, overhauling the Oxford Products Ducati rider on the short run from Cronk-ny-Mona to the Grandstand.

Manxman Conor Cummins was fourth on the Milenco by Padgett’s Yamaha YZR500, with the top six completed by Ryan Kneen (Herheim Kawasaki) and Michael Sweeney (Mistral Racing Kawasaki).

Michael Dunlop during his pit stop in the RST Superbike Classic TT on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

Michael Dunlop during his pit stop in the RST Superbike Classic TT on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

The four-lap race was pushed back to a 5.15pm start after mist in the morning resulted in a delay to the race schedule.

Earlier, Fermanagh's Lee Johnston retired from the lead of the Locate.im Junior Classic race on the Davies Motorsport Honda.

Yorkshire's Jamie Coward clinched an emotional victory after finishing on the podium at the event five times over the past six years.

Coward, riding the Ted Woof/Craven Honda, finished 37.9 seconds ahead of Michael Rutter (Ripley Land Honda), with last year's winner Dominic Herbertson sealing third on the Davies Motorsport Honda.