British Superbikes

British Super Bikes – Round 1 – Brands Hatch Indy

Author: Chris Maher, Pictures Courtesy of: Chris Maher | Photography

British Super Bikes 2011

 Round 1 – Brands Hatch Indy – 22nd Apr to 25th Apr

 The MCE Insurance British Super Bike season opener got underway this Easter Weekend. In stark contrast, 2 years ago the race had to be cancelled due to snow. The weather couldn’t be any different this weekend, with an ambient temperature of around 23-27oC and a track temperature peaking at 47.1oC. It was thought a new Track Record would be set. Indeed it was, in the Third Qualifying Session. Shane (Shakey) Bryne (HM Plant – Honda) set a New Track Record of 45.112s with Kiyonari, Laverty & Hill all beating the previous Record held by Gregorio Lavilla. This set the front row for Race 1 Grid positions. 

  1. Shane Byrne – HM Plant Honda
  2. Ryuichi Kiyonari – HM Plant Honda
  3. Michael Laverty – Swan Yamaha
  4. Tommy Hill – Swan Yamaha

 The best EVO Class grid positions all went to the Team WFR’s three riders. Graeme Gowland, Glen Richards & Alex Lowes.

 There was plenty of other drama over the Weekend. Jenny Tinmouth’s Splitlath debut into BSB didn’t go to plan, an electrical fault that saw her machine uncompetitive and withdrawn from the weekend’s events. A shortage of component’s seem to of plagued a few of the Teams, but many were putting it down to early season teething problems. HM Plant’s Ryuichi Kiyonari dropped his machine in the Warm Up Session on Race Day, but was all right to start the Race. Dennis Hobbs had crashed in the final test session & was ruled out due to concussion. 

Race 1

HM Plant’s Shane Byrne returned to the BSB Championship in a blaze of glory. Scorching around the track all weekend, Shakey, back from WSBK seemed almost untouchable. Team mate & last seasons Champion, Ryuichi Kiyonari had a disappointing start to his Podium Points collection for the Final Showdown & only managed 7 laps before his machine ground to a halt. Another disappointing start to the season was had for Team WFR’s Graeme Gowland, who qualified as the quickest EVO Class rider. Gowla, also crashed out after 7 laps & later withdrew from starting Race 2, this was due to a broken bone in one of his wrists. Michael Laverty’s Swan Yamaha lost grip & he was almost ran over by Team Mate Tommy Hill, as they fought out for the 1st position with the HM Plant’s Shakey Byrne. The race was Red Flagged whilst the debris got removed. This incidence allowed Stuart Easton’s MSS Colchester’s Kawasaki to take the lead behind the pace car & John Hopkins Samsung Cresent Racing’s Suzuki who had also taken a tumble, a chance to tag on the back of the reformed group.

Once the Race had got back underway, Bryne, Brookes, Baz, Rutter & Easton battled for the podium places. John Brookes Relentless Suzuki & Matteo Mossas 777RR Mototorsort’s Suzuki’s crashed out, followed by Ian Lowry’s Buildbase BMW Motorrad. 

Result – BSB 

  1. Shane Byrne         –           HM Plant Honda
  2. Tommy Hill          –           Swan Yamaha
  3. Tommy Bridewell            –           Tyco Honda
  4. Stuart Easton       –           MSS Colchester Kawasaki 

Result – EVO

  1. Glen Richards       –           Team WFR Honda
  2. Alex Lowes           –           Team WFR Honda
  3. Simon Andrews    –           PR Racing Kawasaki
  4. Patrick Muff         –           Tyco Honda 

Race 2

It was both HM Plant Honda’s & Swan Yamaha’s that dominated the second race of the day. Racing to the bitter end, Byrne, Kiyonari & Hill jostled for first position. It was Swan Yamaha’s Tommy Hill that took the win by the narrowest of margins. Linfoot, Easton & Hopkins fought for the minor placings but added valuable points to their championship standings. This was a confidence booster for Tommy Hill, who narrowly missed out on last years championship win. Nursing an elbow injury throughout the weekend, Hill hadn’t done that much testing till last minute. On the final test session, he managed 51 laps of the circuit. He knows now that HM Plant Honda’s can be beating, and will start the next round at Oulton Park on the Mayday Bank holiday with a race win under his belt & the championship lead. 

Result – BSB 

  1. Tommy Hill           –           Swan Yamaha
  2. Ryuichi Kiyonari   –           HM Plant Honda
  3. Shane Byrne          –           HM Plant Honda
  4. Michael Laverty    –           Swan Yamaha 

Result – EVO 

  1. Alex Lowes           –           Team WFR Honda
  2. Glen Richards       –           Team WFR Honda
  3. Simon Andrews    –           PR Racing Kawasaki
  4. James Hillier          –           Bournmouth Kawasaki Racing 

Standings – BSB

  1. Tommy Hill
  2. Shane Byrne
  3. Stuart Easton
  4. Ryuichi Kiyonari
  5. Michael Rutter

 Standings – EVO 

  1. Glen Richards
  2. Alex Lowes
  3. Simon Andrews 

Official Website: 2011 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship