Steve Plater and Michael Rutter took the penultimate round victories in the Motor Cycle News British Superbike Championship at Mallory Park today (15 September), while Sean Emmett kept the title chase open with two second places as series leader Steve Hislop struggled home in sixth and fifth position.

In the opening race Emmett was at his most determined, shrugging aside a lingering hand injury and then overcoming a second row start aboard his Virgin Mobile Aiwa Yamaha to be scrapping for the lead at the tight, demanding 1.37 mile Leicestershire circuit.

Rutter, who had shattered the lap record to claim his fifth pole start of the campaign, made the early running in the opening 30 lap race before being taken by his Renegade Ducati team-mate Shane Byrne, but at half distance, Emmett grabbed the lead.

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Steve Plater, who had enjoyed maiden glory at Oulton Park made it two wins in successive rides as he moved ahead in the final stages, with Emmett riding defensively holding onto second place ahead of Rutter.

Emmett commented ''There is a Championship at stake, it was a case of out-smarting and not gifting positions. I had to try and make myself as wide as possible. I couldn't feel my left hand for much of the race.''

Rutter made the break from the off in the second race, pulling well clear, as he improved the lap record with a time of 47.159s, but Emmett held onto second place, under severe pressure from Plater.

Emmett now trails Hislop by 37 points as they head for Donington Park and the final showdown on Sunday 29 September, where the MonsterMob Ducati rider will be hoping for an upturn in fortunes. Hislop suffered tyre problems in the first race of the day while an error going into the Hairpin cost him vital time in the second race.