MICHAEL Rutter is confident things are falling into for a grandstand finish to his 2012 Isle of Man TT campaign despite a mixed start.
After a practice week free from incident Rutter, riding for MSS Batham’s Kawasaki, entered Saturday’s curtain-raising Dainese Superbike in high spirits.
But a gearbox problem inside his first competitive lap of the 37.73-mile mountain course put paid to his chances, leaving Rutter to turn his attention to Monday’s Royal London 360 Superstock showdown.
The Kingswinford race ace had been fastest on the superstock bike during practice and was tipped by many to gatecrash the podium but in the end was forced to settle for seventh after four laps of racing.
And Rutter admitted afterwards there was still plenty more to come from his big bike ahead of Friday’s blue-riband event, the PokerStars Senior TT.
He said: “Practice week went really well, though it might have gone too well. We had very few problems and then the Superbike race, first lap we went out with a gearbox problem on Sulby Straight.
“It just shows you that you can do a fantastic practice and then that happens. But that’s racing, hopefully it’s behind us and we can finish with a good week.
“I was happy with my result in the Superstock, it was quite a close race and I felt like I was riding well.
“I’m really looking forward to the Senior, things seem to be going really well and the more laps you do around here the more confident you get.”
The 2012 Isle of Man TT Races fuelled by Monster Energy will be shown every evening on ITV4 from May 28 to June 11. For more information on the event and for live Radio TT commentary and live timings as well as the full ITV4 schedule, go to iomtt.com