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ENCOURAGING START FOR SHARK-RIDERS AT FIRST BSB ROUND

The first round of the MCE British Superbike Championship kicked off this weekend from a sun-drenched Brands Hatch, Kent. SHARK-supported riders had a strong weekend during the MCE Superbike races and the selected support races.

Ben Wilson started his 2011 campaign in style winning the first British Supersport race on Saturday, meanwhile on Sunday the SHARK-protected rider finished the second race in fourth position and is currently leading the championship. Cup rider John Simpson finished second in the first race and won the Cup element of the second race.

Alex Lowes had a fantastic weekend after moving into the BSB Evo class for this season. Finishing his first race in second place after being piped to the post by his teammate Glen Richards, race two saw victory for the young SHARK-rider and another podium in the Evo class.

Laverty will start from third for race one

Laverty will start from third for race one

During the first Superbike race SHARK-supported Michael Laverty’s campaign en ded in dramatic fashion after the Irishman suffered a highside whilst leading the race at Clark Curve. During the second race, Laverty was able to take part and finished in a solid fourth place.

James Westmoreland’s move to the Superbike Championship from Supersport ended in disappointment after he crashed out of both races.

Manx-man Conor Cummins returned to racing this weekend only 10 months after his horrific crash during the Isle of Man Senior TT. Cummins finished 18th in the Metzeler National 1000cc Superstock Championship onboard his new ZX-10R Blackhorse Kawasaki. In the sunshine the SHARK-protected rider got his weekend underway with the 16th fastest time in the opening qualifying session on Saturday.

13-year-old Kyle Ryde lead every practice session over the weekend by a margin, qualified in pole but crashed out whilst leading the race – certainly a star of the future in the 125 Championship. SHARK-protected Ryan Watson and Harry Hartley finished the race in second and third place respectively.

In the Superstock 1000 category four SHARK-riders filled the top eight places with Adam Jenkinson (fourth) Howie Mainwarwing (fifth) Marshall Neill (seventh) and Dan Johnson (eighth)

The championship continues next weekend from Oulton Park, Cheshire.

Michael Laverty, British Superbike – race one: DNF, race two: fourth:

Today has been a bit of a tough one for me. I am feeling a little bit sore, but I was able to walk away from a really big crash in the first race and that is the main thing but the team worked hard to get the bike back together for the second race. It was a shame to crash out as I felt quite good and I was feeling confident for the win. It was a big crash; the tyre just spun and I didn’t have time to save it. I did get clipped by Tommy but I was so lucky that both him and Shakey were able to miss me. In the second race I felt ok and set the fastest lap but then there were a few places where the front was folding and I didn’t want to crash again. We have a few days now before Oulton Park and I want to come out there and get back on the podium.

Alex Lowes, BSB Evo – race one: second, race two: first:

It was the first race of the season, so there was a bit of nerves on the start line. But it was a really good race and I was only held back by a little bit of arm pump. The team have been mega and I’m loving riding my bike at the moment.

Howie Mainwaring, Superstock 1000: fifth:

“I’ve had some bad luck over the weekend, as well as a few crashes, so I’m happy to get a solid fifth place. I could have pushed harder and possibly kept up with the leading group but it’s better to get the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R home and secure points than risk another crash.”

Conor Cummins, Superstock 1000: 18th:

Conor Cummins

Conor Cummins

« To get that first race out of the way feels absolutely brilliant and all weekend I’ve just been getting better and better. Practice went well and although the second qualifying session didn’t quite go to plan, I was glad to get the extra mileage in the Shoot Out race and we were able to try a few more things with the bike which really helped with the set-up. I achieved my goal of getting into the race proper and after that anything else was going to be a bonus. As it turned out, I got a mega start and achieved more than I thought I could. It’s very much work in progress but I feel like a racer again and to be battling it out close to the points after all I’ve been through is pretty good going in my book. I’ve got to say a big thanks to the team for making my life so much easier this weekend as they’ve absolutely worked their backsides off. I’ve also got to say a massive thank you to them and all my sponsors for sticking by me through the hard months I’ve had. To sum it up, I’m chuffed to bits! »

Brands Hatch, Superbike, race one (30 laps):

1 / S. BYRNE
2 / T. HILL
3 / T. BRIDEWELL
4 / S. EASTON
5 / J. KIRKHAM
6 / M. RUTTER
7 / L. BAZ (SHARK)
8 / D. LINFOOT
9 / M. JESSOPP
10 / C. WALKER
12 / (Evo) A. LOWES (SHARK)
DNF / I. LOWRY (SHARK)
DNF / M. LAVERTY (SHARK)
DNF / J. WESTMORELAND (SHARK)

Brands Hatch, Superbike, race two (30 laps):

1 / T. HILL
2 / R. KIYONARI
3 / S. BYRNE
4 / M. LAVERTY (SHARK)
5 / J. HOPKINS
6 / S. EASTON
7 / M. RUTTER
8 / D. LINFOOT
9 / P. HICKMAN
10 / G. MASON
12 / (Evo) A. LOWES (SHARK)
DNF / J. WESTMORELAND (SHARK)

Current Championship Standings:

1 / T. HILL 45
2 / S. BYRNE 41
3 / S. EASTON 23
4 / R. KIYONARI 20
5 / M. RUTTER 19
6 / T. BRIDEWELL 16
7 / D. LINFOOT 16
8 / M. LAVERTY (SHARK) 13
9 / L. BAZ (SHARK) 12
10 / J. KIRKHAM 11
16 / (Evo) A. LOWES (SHARK) 8

British Supersport, race one – Saturday -  (18 laps):

1 / B. WILSON (SHARK)
2 / P. YOUNG
3 / J. KENNEDY
4 / L. JOHNSTON
5 / S. PLATER
6 / A. JON VENTER
7 / L. MOSSEY
8 / J. HILL
9 / M. WHITHAM
10 / G. JOHNSON

British Supersport, race two – Sunday -  (26 laps):

1 / A. SEELEY
2 / J. KENNEDY
3 / S. PLATER
4 / B. WILSON (SHARK)
5 / D. HIPWELL (SHARK)
6 / L. JOHNSTON
7 / J. HILL
8 / L. MOSSEY
9 / S. WARREN
10 / D. COOPER

Current Championship Standings:

1 / B. WILSON (SHARK) 38
2 / J. KENNEDY 36
3 / S. PLATER 27
4 / A. SEELEY 25
5 / L. JOHNSTON 23
6 / P. YOUNG 20
7 / L. MOSSEY 17
8 / J. HILL 17
9 / A. JON VENTER 14
10 / G. JOHNSON 11

British Superstock 1000 Championship (16 laps):

1 / D. BUCHAN (SHARK)
2 / J. O’HALLORAN
3 / T. PALMER
4 / A. JENKINSON (SHARK)
5 / H. MAINWARING (SHARK)
6 / R. COOPER
7 / M. NEILL (SHARK)
8 / D. JOHNSON (SHARK)
9 / L. QUIGLEY
10 / J. MCGUINNESS

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