British Superbikes: Peter Hickman misses out on Showdown spot

Hickman stands on the Oulton Park podium EMN-161209-152024002
Hickman stands on the Oulton Park podium EMN-161209-152024002

British Superbikes racer Peter Hickman missed out on a place in the end-of-season showdown by just 10 points despite a podium finish at Oulton Park last weekend.

The Louth rider was part of a history-making day as Hickman and team-mates Leon Haslam and James Ellison claimed the first-ever podium lockout for the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team in race one at the Cheshire circuit.

Hickman has his sights set on the Riders Cup for the top finisher outside of the Showdown places EMN-161209-152045002

Hickman has his sights set on the Riders Cup for the top finisher outside of the Showdown places EMN-161209-152045002

Hicky progressed through to the final stages of qualifying to secure seventh place on the grid for the first race on Saturday afternoon.

Hicky settled into sixth for the opening laps after a good start, and when Bridewell crashed, he was elevated to fifth.

The Lincolnshire ace set about reeling in Luke Mossey and eventually passed him on lap 12, and when Shakey Byrne, highsided Hicky took advantage and moved up to third which he held to the chequered flag.

“What an incredible race and it’s an amazing feeling to be part of the JG Speedfit Kawasaki 1-2-3, the first in BSB history,” he said.

“I knew our race pace was strong, particularly towards the end of the race. I know I needed to keep my head, particularly when Jason was putting the pressure on, but knowing the podium lockout was possible I really wanted to do it!”

Hicky needed another good result to stand any chance of a place in the showdown, but couldn’t replicate the result in Sunday;s race two and crossed the line in seventh.

But he was handed a lifeline when Michael Laverty crashed on the final lap, ensuring Laverty, Luke Mossey and Hicky went into the final race with just two points separating them from a showdown position.

Hickman got away to a good start, but his progress was halted by the safety car which remained on the track for four laps.

He eventually finished in seventh once again, but just too far back to claim his showdown place.

He moves on to Donington Park this weekend in eighth place, just six points away from seventh-placed Laverty and now has his sights set on securing the Riders Cup.

“It’s been a really good weekend; making history is certainly something we’ll remember for a long time!

“It’s certainly disappointing to be so close to the Showdown and miss out, but our focus is now solely on being crowned the Riders Champion at the end of the season.”

At Donington Park, Friday sees two free practice sessions at 10.15am and 4pm before a third session the following morning at 10.10am.

Qualifying follows on Saturday at 4.02pm ahead of Sunday’s two 20-lap races at 1.30pm and 3.30pm.