The Rockingham circuit in Northampton played host to the British Superbike Championship last weekend and served up two more action-packed races for the impressive crowd at Britain's newest motorsports venue.

With both races ending in victory for Michael Rutter the championship is still wide open and we can expect to see plenty of close racing as the leading riders fight for an advantage.

Within the Padgett's team Marty Nutt's strong performances in both races maintained the momentum that has been building since the return from injury of Adrian Coates.

Riding at the circuit for the first time Nutt rose to the challenge and capitalised on the development work carried out by the team as they continue to release the full potential of the big Suzuki. In a thrilling finish to race one Nutt held off a hard-chasing Lee Jackson to cross the line just behind seasoned campaigner Matt Llewellyn.

Race two saw a determined performance from Nutt result in a points finish and a significant helping of extra confidence to take to the next round at Knockhill in July.

The predominance of left-hand corners at the Corby track did not suit Nutt's newly returned teammate Adrian Coates however. Despite inspired showings at Snetterton and Brands Hatch, the Ulsterman was finding it difficult to keep on the pace as the anti-clockwise track took its toll on the leg he injured in pre-season testing. After running wide in race one and finding himself at the back of the field and out of the points, the 2001 British 250 Champion finally retired on lap 12 when the team decided to maximise it's points opportunity by concentrating on race two. Unfortunately despite a super-human effort the 28-year-old struggled to maintain his early pace in race two eventually finishing just outside the points in 16th position.

Coates now has two weeks to rest before making the long journey north of the border to the twists and turns of Knockhill. Often wet, this circuit can be a great leveller and the Padgett's team are keen to make the most of the reliability they've shown throughout the year in order to move further up the BSB Premier League.



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