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BSB Thruxton 2013: Byrne in dramatic final lap victory

14 April 2013

CLICK HERE to view Race 1 results.

Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki star Shane 'Shakey' Byrne played a waiting game as he pounced to secure his second MCE British Superbike Championship victory of the season with a calculated last lap move on Josh Brookes at Thruxton.

Byrne has now equalled the series record of 43 victories after he left it until the final corner to demote Tyco Suzuki star Brookes to the runner-up spot in race one, crossing the line to take the chequered flag with 0.301s to spare.

Pole-sitter Alex Lowes was third on the Samsung Honda, 0.633s down on Byrne, with the top trio finishing clear of the remainder of the field.

Buildbase BMW's James Westmoreland finished fourth after a battle with team-mate Jon Kirham, with the pair six seconds behind Byrne after 20 laps.

Milwaukee Yamaha's James Ellison, who was forced to start from the fifth row of the grid after struggling with a technical issue during free practice, rode a superb race to snatch sixth spot behind the Buildbase BMW duo.

Lowes hit the front after seizing the lead from Byrne on a dramatic first lap that saw Milwaukee Yamaha's Josh Waters crash out unhurt at high speed.

Byrne took over the lead on lap two from Lowes and Ulsterman Keith Farmer on the second of Paul Bird's Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki machines, but the reigning National Superstock 1000 champion bit the dust on lap six on the approach to Allard as he battled with Quattro Plant Kawasaki's Chris Walker.

Farmer's accident resulted in the safety car taking to the Hampshire circuit and when the race resumed it was Byrne from Lowes, Brookes and Walker, although the veteran Kawasaki rider was dealt a cruel blow when he was forced to retire on his Quattro Plant ZX-10R.

Buildbase BMW pair James Westmoreland and Jon Kirkham were locked in a thrilling duel as they swapped positions in pursuit of fourth place before James Ellison entered the fray on the Milwaukee Yamaha.

Ellison made a stunning recovery after starting from the fifth row of the grid in 17th position to charge through the field.

As the race reached a conclusion, Brookes had moved to the front but the wily Byrne waited until the last corner on the final lap to strike a crucial blow and the 36-year-old held on for the victory.

Brookes was next with Lowes completed the podium positions.

Westmoreland emerged on top of his battle with Kirkham, while Ellison celebrated a well-deserved sixth place finish.

PR Kawasaki's Karl Harris was a solid seventh, with the top ten completed by Bathams Honda rider Michael Rutter, PJ Jacobsen on the Tyco Suzuki and Jakub Smrz on the Padgetts Honda Fireblade.


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