Northern Ireland's Keith Farmer could not have envisaged a better debut in the Metzeler National Superstock 1000 Championship as he sealed a fairy-tale victory on his debut for the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki team.

Farmer, a former Irish Supermoto champion who won the British Superstock 600 title at his first attempt in 2011, scythed through the field to reign supreme in the wet conditions on the Brands Hatch Indy circuit after starting from the sixth row of the grid to leave team boss Paul Bird 'speechless'.

The 23-year-old, who took the victory ahead of former champion Steve Brogan, said afterwards: "That's just the way we roll! I was hoping to get into the points at the first few rounds and get stronger as the year wore on so to be sitting here with a win at the first race is unbelievable.

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"I got the perfect start from the sixth row and pushed as hard as I could - it was the only way you were going to make up places. I kept the shoulders wide and pushed on so a big thanks to Paul and the team, it's an opportunity of a lifetime for me and this is just the perfect start."

Bird, who was impressed by Farmer's progress last season, was fulsome in his praise of the promising Ulsterman, who only began short circuit tarmac racing in 2010.

"Regarding Keith I'm absolutely speechless," said Bird. "To come through from way down the field to lead in the opening few laps is just unbelievable and is a fantastic start to the season for us.

"I'd forgotten what it was like to win and this is just the tonic we need for the team for the rest of the season."

Assessing the performances of his BSB riders, Stuart Easton and Shane Byrne, Bird added: "It's been a bit of a difficult day for both 'Shakey' and Stuart and we went a little bit in the wrong direction with their settings as like most teams we've had very little in the way of wet testing.

"I'm pleased for Stuart who has done remarkably well this weekend and we know Shakey will bounce back next weekend at Thruxton."