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Ellison holds firm under pressure for race one triumph
10 August 2013
Milwaukee Yamaha's James Ellison sealed his second MCE British Superbike Championship victory of the season with a cool ride under pressure at Oulton Park.
Ellison was hounded by Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki rider Shane Byrne throughout the re-started 15-lap race, which was shortened by one lap after an incident involving Keith Farmer, Howie Mainwaring and Jamie Poole at Hizzy's.
Samsung Honda's Alex Lowes was the early leader as he made a flying start from pole position, but Ellison soon took over with Byrne third and Josh Brookes on the Tyco Suzuki next.
Brookes' team-mate, PJ Jacobsen, was forced to start from the back of the grid after failing to leave pit lane in time for the sighting lap.
It was a massive blow to the American rider, who had sealed his best qualifying position yet on the front row in third place.
The top four of Ellison, Lowes, Byrne and Brookes began to pull away from the chasing pack –headed by Tommy Bridewell on the Halsall Racing Kawasaki – after the first four laps of the Cheshire circuit.
With Ellison opening a slight gap at the front, Byrne made his move on Paul Bird's Kawasaki on the sixth lap, passing Lowes at Island Bend.
Aussie Brookes also passed Lowes as Byrne set about reducing the gap to Ellison, who was setting a hot pace out front on his own.
Behind the leading quartet, Bridewell, Jon Kirkham (Buildbase BMW) and Samsung Honda's Ryuichi Kiyonari were the top six.
Lowes went back into third place ahead of Brookes as Ellison and Byrne pulled away in their personal battle for the lead, with Brookes slipping back into the clutches of the impressive Bridewell, who was having his first race on the Halsall Kawasaki.
Byrne was right on Ellison's tail on the final laps but was unable to find a way past as the former MotoGP CRT rider won the first of the weekend's three BSB races at Oulton.
The three-time BSB champion, who is seeking a landmark 50th victory in the series, looked menacing heading onto the final lap but Ellison never faltered and held on for a deserved victory for Shaun Muir's team, taking the chequered flag by 0.186s.
Lowes was 1.923s down in third place as he claimed the last place on the rostrum by 1.737s from Brookes, who managed to keep the hard-charging Bridewell at bay.
Kiyonari made god headway from 17th position on the grid to take sixth on the second Samsung Honda ahead of the unlucky Jacobsen, with Kirkham, Walker and Dan Linfoot (Lloyds British GBmoto Honda) the first ten.
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