Not wishing to be outdone by their contemporaries on the world stage in Italy this weekend, British Superbike Championship contenders Shane Byrne and John Reynolds provided a fantastic opening race battle for the win at Brands Hatch, with 'Shakey' coming out on top.

The two riders swapped places at Paddock Hill Bend, Druids Hairpin and then finally at Hawthorns on the final lap as Byrne shook off the effects of Friday's truly epic accident and a dodgy stomach to take another victory for the MonsterMob Ducati team.

Reynolds, who was given a chance to catch his breath when the safety car appeared after 13 of 20 laps to allow course workers to deal with a fallen Paul Young, led the majority of the race on his Rizla Suzuki but after failing to capitalise on the brutish power of his GSX-R 1000 on the long straight at the start of the Brands Hatch Grand Prix loop Byrne gave him no chance to make a move on the final half lap.

Honda's Steve Plater came home four seconds behind the two leaders in third position with Yamaha's Gary Mason fourth, defending Champion Steve Hislop fifth and Glen Richards an excellent sixth after starting from the pit-lane on his spare Hawk Kawasaki.

Both Renegade Ducati's retired in the early going with Michael Rutter pulling into the pits with a mechanical problem and Sean Emmett, sensationally fired then re-hired by the team during the course of the race morning, crashing out of third place at Druids.

[Photo: Double Red].



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