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BSB Oulton Park: Lowes victorious, Byrne crashes out

6 May 2013

CLICK HERE to view Race 1 results.

Samsung Honda's Alex Lowes fulfilled his promise from qualifying as the pole-sitter moved to the top of the MCE British Superbike Championship with a brilliant race one victory at Oulton Park.

Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider Shane 'Shakey' Byrne had been poised behind Lowes until he appeared to lose the front end of his ZX-10R at Britten's on lap 12, sliding off unhurt.

That left Lowes with a commanding advantage and he cruised home to take the win by 3.348s from Milwaukee Yamaha's James Ellison, who rode magnificently to overhaul Aussie Josh Brookes on the Tyco Suzuki two laps from the end of the 18-lap race.

Ellison had started from tenth position on the grid on his YZF-R1 after missing the final qualifying session due to an oil pressure problem with his Yamaha.

He will now start from fourth place for race two and will be confident of mounting a challenge for victory after his strong ride in the opener.

Brookes took the final rostrum place, two seconds down on Ellison, with the top six completed by Buildbase BMW's Jon Kirkham, Tommy Bridewell on the Bathams Honda and Peter Hickman (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Honda).

Byrne hit the front from the off but was passed almost immediately by Lowes, who attempted to make a break.

By the end of the opening lap, Lowes, Byrne and Brookes had already opened a slight advantage over the chasing pack, headed by Bridewell.

Ulsterman Keith Farmer, who started from fourth position, was an early faller on lap one.

Lowes had put some daylight between himself and Byrne after five laps, who was coming under pressure from Brookes.

However, at the halfway point Byrne was closing in on the leader as Brookes dropped back, with Ellison making rapid headway.

Byrne was right on Lowes' tail on the 12th lap but his race ended abruptly when he went down at Britten's, leaving the Samsung Honda rider clear of Brookes and Ellison, with Bridewell, Kirkham and Hickman some distance behind.

Ellison was on the charge and moved into the runner-up position from Brookes on the 16th lap, edging ahead in the final stages to cement the position by two seconds.

Brookes was comfortable in third followed by Kirkham, who narrowly held off Bridewell, with Hickman 20 seconds down on race winner Lowes at the flag.

James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW), PJ Jacobsen (Tyco Suzuki), Chris Walker (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) and Tristan Palmer (Lloyds British GBmoto Honda) were the top ten.

Bathams Honda rider Michael Rutter's 400th BSB race ended in disappointment as he retired on lap six.


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