There were thousands at Cadwell Park at the weekend for the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship.
The Louth based Samsung Honda team celebrated one of its strongest championship performances when Alex Lowes claimed a double victory in front of a huge crowd.
In the opening race of the weekend, pole-sitter Lowes charged to the front of the field and withstood intense pressure from his rivals to claim an impressive victory; his first for the team since Snetterton in July and his fourth win of the 2013 campaign. Ryuichi Kiyonari, meanwhile, had a tough start to race one but fought back to seventh place at the flag.
Lowes followed up his opening race win with a spectacular victory in race two after coming under fire from Josh Brookes on the final lap. As a result, the 22-year-old from Lincoln moves to second place in the standings, narrowing the overall lead of Shane Byrne. Kiyonari enjoyed a better performance in race two to head the second group of riders in fifth position.
In the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship Jason O’Halloran followed up his podium performance at Oulton Park with a superb third place in the Feature race, making further improvements after finishing fifth in the Sprint race earlier in the weekend.
Alex Lowes said: “The races were hard work actually! I had a good pace in practice and qualifying and then the temperature went up for the first race which made it more difficult.
“I wanted to try and get to the front and then if they passed me they would have to work really hard to pull it off! I didn’t want Shakey to come by me at the end of the race and with five laps to go I pushed hard and that was enough. Overall it has been a fairytale weekend. That second race was so hard and fair play to Josh as he stuck with me and pushed me.
“When he came passed me I thought: “No, I have led all this time and he has got me on the final lap”, but then luck was on my side. I hope Josh is OK and I am sure he is going to come back strong at Donington. I want to thank my team and all the fans at Cadwell Park for their support this weekend; it has been awesome. I am looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Ryuichi Kiyonari said: “We have made some improvements but it wasn’t enough to be fighting for the podium this weekend. We have made changes but it is a balance because we make a change that makes one area better, but makes another one not. We have been trying hard but we are still in the top six which is important for Donington Park.”
Havier Beltran, team manager, said: “What a weekend for the Samsung Honda team at our home round! A phenomenal double win for Alex and a podium in the Supersport class with Jason, too. Alex has been confident all weekend and he has shown again his maturity and ability with two fantastic performances. Kiyo made improvements and, most importantly, maintained his position in the top six, so he needs to secure that at Donington Park.”
British Superbikes, race one
1) Alex Lowes (HON), 2) Shane Byrne, 3) Josh Brookes, 4) Tommy Bridewell, 5) PJ Jacobsen, 6 Chris Walker, 7) Ryuichi Kiyonari (HON), 8) Peter Hickman, 9) Keith Farmer, 10) James Westmorland
British Superbikes, race two
1) Alex Lowes (HON), 2) Tommy Bridewell, 3) James Ellison, 4) Shane Byrne, 5) Ryuichi Kiyonari (HON), 6) Chris Walker, 7) Peter Hickman, 8) Josh Waters, 9) James Westmorland, 10) Jon Kirkham
British Supersport, race one
1) Ben Wilson, 2) Stuart Easton, 3) Graeme Gowland, 4) Billy McConnell, 5) Jason O’Halloran (HON), 6) Richard Cooper, 7) Danny Buchan, 8) Scott Smart, 9) Deane Brown, 10) Taylor Mackenzie
British Supersport, race two
1) Billy McConnell, 2) Ben Wilson, 3) Jason O’Halloran (HON), 4) Stuart Easton, 5) Graeme Gowland, 6) Richard Cooper, 7) Glen Richards, 8) Alastair Seeley, 9) Deane Brown, 10) Danny Buchan
Next race: Round nine - Donington Park, 6-8 September