Crash.Net BSB News
Brookes at the double, Lowes into Showdown
9 September 2012 CLICK HERE
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Josh Brookes has sent out a warning to his MCE British Superbike Championship title rivals as he completed a resounding double win at Donington Park, while Alex Lowes picked up the sixth and final Showdown spot ahead of the three-round shootout.
Having dominated proceedings in race one, Brookes was a favourite to make it two-in-a-row from pole position, but he was made to work very hard by Michael Laverty on this occasion as the Honda rider repeatedly attempted to wrest the lead from him.
With Laverty grabbing the initiative with a pass into the Esses on lap one, though Brookes struck back on lap two in the same place, an undeterred Laverty bided his time before nosing ahead again on lap nine.
However, though he was rebuffed initially as he attempted to find a route around Laverty, Brookes eventually prevailed with a decisively daring pass beneath the Honda through the high-speed Starkey's bend on lap 14. It would prove the crucial moment of the race as he continued on for a win that brings the curtain down on the 'first phase' of the 2012 season.
Indeed, attentions now turn towards the impending three-round shootout at Assen, Silverstone and Brands Hatch with Tommy Hill, Brookes, Shane Byrne, Laverty, Tommy Bridewell and Alex Lowes – who firmed his place with a solid ride to fifth – all going forward for the six-way tussle.
With the points equalised and the podiums credits added on, Hill leads the way with 535 points, while Brookes is on 525, Byrne on 523, Laverty on 514, Lowes on 502 and Bridewell on 500.
Behind Brookes and Laverty, Hill completed a lonely ride to third position, while Bridewell proved he deserves to be in the Showdown by climbing his way from 11th to finish in a season's best of fourth, ahead of Lowes and James Westmoreland.
Stuart Easton completed a fairly lucrative day on the sole Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki in seventh place, ahead of Luca Scassa, the Italian notching up his best finish since round two at Oulton Park.
Jon Kirkham and Chris Walker rounded out the top ten, ahead of Patric Muff and Noriyuki Haga, the Japanese rider fighting hard despite his collarbone injury before eventually fading to 12th place at the chequered flag. His failure to make the Showdown means he cannot finish higher than seventh in his debut season of BSB racing.
Barry Burrell, Michael Rutter and Peter Hickman picked up the remaining points in 13th, 14th and 15th, edging out Ian Lowry, whose failure to score at Donington Park compounds his frustration having been classified inside the top six just two rounds ago.