IAN HUTCHINSON: RIDING THROUGH THE PAIN
16-time TT winner, Ian Hutchinson continues his conversation with Chris Pritchard and Steve Plater in part two of his sequel on The TT Podcast.
Hutchy first rode at the TT in 2004 and had his first win in 2007. He says he was having the time of his life. After the North West 200 in 2007, he, Michael Rutter and John McGuinness went straight to the Isle of Man: we literally got drunk every single night from Monday to Friday, went and got scrutineered on Saturday and did the first night of practice Saturday night.” Ian says he thinks attitudes have become more serious since those days.
In 2008, Ian and Steve were teammates. The two share memories of the TT fortnight, including a fire in the tent during practice week and some shaky moments during race week too. Ian says he thinks there were challenges with having two such successful riders for the set up of the team.
In 2010, Ian Hutchinson became the only rider to have ever won five TT races in one week. Ian reveals that after pulling out of the British Superbikes, he went to Clive Padgett to ask for a ride on machines John McGuinness had ridden the year before. Hutchy raced at the North West 200 and then went on to the TT. He says before the fortnight, he had an inkling he might be in for success: “I remember being sat in a beer garden … I said I literally could win on any of them bikes, they’re all good enough to win”. Steve finds out how Hutchy felt on the startline of the Senior that year, having already won four from four.
As well as learning about the physical injuries Ian’s picked up on the road, including from his crash at the Senior TT in 2017, Chris and Steve find out how he’s been affected mentally: “It was tough … I didn’t feel like I’d peaked, but I’d had a very short time to get to that point”. He tells the guys how he used every chance he could during his recoveries to get onto the road, including a TT parade lap, and shares how he grew his mindset to keep going in the face of difficulty.
What did his mum and dad make of it all? “They’ve never liked road racing” he says after a short circuit crash, he was lying in hospital and told his dad his plans to keep riding.“I just remember my dad’s face … he said whatever you do, don’t mention coming back to your mum”.
Would it have been better if Hutchy’s relationship with Michael Dunlop hadn’t been brought up during the podcast? Potentially. From paddock rivalry to unhelpful newspaper headlines, Ian sums it up: “I don’t like to be beaten by the same bike”.
As well as all of this, Hutchy shares some interesting stories of nights out which John McGuinness might rather hadn’t surfaced, and Chris and Steve, find out whether Hutchy thinks he has another win at the TT in him.