British Superbikes, Oulton Park - PBM Ducati win in new era with Irwin

Glenn Irwin stayed with the Hagar PBM team and was rewarded with a win to mark a new era for the outfit at Oulton Park.

Glenn Irwin BSB, 2024, Oulton Park, Race 1, podium with Christian Iddon and Kyle Ryde
Glenn Irwin BSB, 2024, Oulton Park, Race 1, podium with Christian Iddon…
© Ian Hopgood Photography

It was clear that a win was possible for Glenn Irwin after he topped the test at Oulton Park right before the Bank Holiday race weekend got underway and the Ducati rider delivered with victory in the opening race, which he controlled from the front.

It was a special moment for the team, now run by the late Paul Bird’s children; Jordan and Frank; as it marks their first success since taking over at Hagar PBM.

Irwin thought his start played a big part in his success, and he got a strong launch from second on the grid, then wasted no time in getting ahead of the then leaders, the Yamaha duo of Kyle Ryde and Ryan Vickers:

“I got quite a good launch off the line, as did Kyle from pole and Ryan - I know Ryan had looked like he had a really good pace from the free practice runs and stuff so I was quite eager to get a look at him and managed to get Kyle - um, quite easily to be fair!”.

Despite looking to be having grip issues in the closing moments - the #2 saved an almost crash on the last lap at Druids - Irwin was happy with the grip levels his Ducati has with the track, which has had several areas of new surface laid:

“The new tarmac is helping the Ducati in it’s weaknesses of edge grip because it’s so grippy around Cascades, so we can now maximise in that corner and use our speed”.

It wasn’t just Ryde that Irwin thought he passed with ease, though he admitted he found the second Yamaha of Vickers more of a challenge:

“Ryan was more difficult to pass, I think they are clearly running two different set ups, in part because his bike was really fast, to be triply honest - kind of surprising!”

“I had a little look obviously, past Knickerbrook, which is where you wouldn’t pass, usually in there and that was more for a bit of fun!”

Irwin got to the front and remained unchallenged for the rest of the race, managing his tyres - leading to his and PBM’s first win of the 2024 season:

“ I got to the front and tried to conserve energy, not just tyre - it’s a funny old track, it’s very physical - it’s not just managing the tyre it is managing yourself”.

Irwin had two more chances of success on the final day of the meet, with the sprint race first on the timetable followed by another full 18 laps of Oulton Park.

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