Shane Byrne has held on to top spot in the second free practice session at Brands Hatch ahead of the 2017 MCE British Superbike championship decider with McAMS Yamaha rider Michael Laverty sneaking ahead of points leader Leon Haslam in the top three.

The defending BSB champion needs to overturn a 33-point deficit on Haslam in the three-race finale at his home circuit to clinch the 2017 title, while also beating Josh Brookes who he trails by one point, and has started on the front foot by topping both free practice sessions.

The Be Wiser Ducati rider notched up a 1m 25.245s to go under the lap record while Laverty acted as a Showdown spoiler by taking second place with for McAMS Yamaha to edge Haslam down to third as less than two-tenths split the top three.

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Moto Rapido Ducati’s John Hopkins grabbed fourth place ahead of Tyco BMW’s Christian Iddon with title contender Brookes in sixth for Anvil Hire Yamaha. Honda’s Dan Linfoot ended the session seventh in front of Assen race two winner Sylvain Guintoli on the Bennetts Suzuki.

BSB Showdown rider Jason O’Halloran secured ninth on the FP2 timesheet ahead of Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) and James Ellison (McAMS Yamaha) – as title contender Jake Dixon tipped off late on which caused a brief red flag to recover his RAF Reserves Kawasaki after a heavy fall at Hawthorns with the rider reported as okay.