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Hill heads up another Swan Yamaha 1-2
29 August 2011
Tommy Hill is guaranteed to start the 2011 MCE British Superbike title showdown as the man to beat after he notched up his sixth win of the season at Cadwell Park.
Having been forced to settle for second-best behind his Swan Yamaha team-mate Michael Laverty in race one, Hill made no mistake in race two as he snatched the lead on the second lap and never looked back.
Indeed, Laverty got the best start from pole position to edge into the lead, but a smart pass by Hill through Hall Bends would see him secure an advantage he wouldn't lose to the chequered flag.
Shane Byrne pushed Hill hard at one stage after passing Laverty on lap four, but Swan Yamaha man would regain the position shortly afterwards to secure his second podium of the weekend and improve his tally of podium credits.
The result means Hill has amassed total of 26 podium credits – compared with Byrne's 22 - with one race remaining, ensuring he will start the title showdown with the highest number of points.
Behind the top three, Josh Brookes – keen to bounce back from his race one disqualification – firmed his place in the title showdown with a fairly quiet run to fourth, the Australian having to fend off the attentions of a feisty Peter Hickman in fifth.
With Brookes assured of a place in the title showdown, just one spot remains available with four riders mathematically still in with a chance of claiming the all-important sixth position. However, it is Ryuichi Kiyonari who looks well placed to book his place after a fighting ride from 16th to ninth, giving him a comfortable 18 point cushion over Jon Kirkham with one race remaining.
Indeed, Kirkham was the only rider to beat Kiyonari on the track, the Samsung Crescent Suzuki rider crossing the line a lonely sixth. Gary Mason, who finished tenth, is also in contention but is 22 points adrift, while Michael Rutter's hopes are almost certainly over after withdrawing one lap into the race, the Rapid Bathams Ducati rider clearly struggling with the rib injuries sustained in his race one collision with Brookes.
Behind Kirkham, Martin Jessopp gave the Rapid Bathams team something to smile about with a pacey run to seventh place, ahead of Graeme Gowland, who had the satisfaction of fending off a last lap attack from Kiyonari to secure EVO honours.
Mason rounded out the top ten, ahead of James Ellison, Scott Smart, Glen Richards, Karl Harris – scoring for the second time this weekend aboard the EVO specification Splitlath Aprilia – and Barry Burrell on the sole remaining Buildbase BMW.
Elsewhere, there was disappointment for Alex Lowes, who crashed out of sixth place, while Tommy Bridewell and Chris Walker were others to fall from points' paying positions.
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