The Sendo Ducati Dienza Performance Team had another successful weekend at round four of the Think! British Superbike Championships, at Oulton Park with rider Dean Thomas threatening the front of the field in both races.

After running right at the thick end of the action in both race one and race two, Thomas had to yield to the usual suspects come the chequered flag and podium time.

Two fourth positions for the Sendo Team was, nevertheless, a very positive and strengthening result and a step in the right direction for Team Manager Enzo Di Clemente and his squad.

Leeds based, 31-year-old, Australian rider Thomas was consistent throughout the weekend's practise and qualifying sessions. Looking strong all weekend Dean was hopeful of a podium position, qualifying a healthy third position on the grid, another front row start for Thomas and he was confident of a good race result.

A massive crowd turned out for the Bank Holiday races to watch some of the best Superbike riders that the world has to offer. Sendo Director Howard Lewis attended his first race meeting of the year and was impressed by the set up and the team's results.

"It's been a great weekend, it's the first time that I've come to watch the team and they have made it all worth while," said the team backer. "Dean was unlucky not to get a podium place but it's been a great opportunity to see what happens behind the scenes and how everything works. Sendo are happy to be sponsoring and associated with such a professional team like this and fingers crossed the team will continuing progressing through the season."

Once the lights went off for the delayed first race, Thomas got a fantastic start as Glen Richards pushed Michael Rutter out onto the grass and the Ducati rider was able to settle into a comfortable third place.

He was then faced with the thankless task of trying to stay in the tow of Suzuki riders Yukio Kagayama and John Reynolds, and he couldn't match their lap times of 1:37s and settled down riding a smooth race in third position.

Thomas began to suffer with severe arm pump, but was fighting to put it to the back of his mind, as his lap-board was showing that he was being hunted down. Michael Rutter on the Honda had battled his way through the field and now had his sights set on the big twin Ducati in front of him. It wasn't long before Michael got the better of Dean and powered past him on the 13th lap.

"The two Suzukis were locked in their own tight battle, Michael came past me and I did my best to try and stay with him," said Thomas after the first race. "I kept him in my sights for the last few laps but just couldn't manage to get close enough to pass him."

Race two proved to be another dramatic affair. Gary Mason on the Yamaha got a flying start and Dean managed to tuck in behind him into second. It wasn't long before the two Suzukis picked their pace up again and made the move on Dean and Gary demoting them to third and fourth places.

Honda's Michael Rutter that got another bad start - if you can call having to start from the back of the field that - but he was soon carving his way through the field. Mason meanwhile was making himself as wide as a bus and Thomas and Rutter were both struggling to find a way past. The Honda made a brave move on the Yammie, forcing Mason out wide, and letting Thomas underneath and up into fourth.

The Sendo Ducati managed to hold on to that position for the rest of the race, however Rutter ahead began to suffer with problems towards the end and the gap narrowed. A few more laps and that podium place would have belonged to Thomas.

"I'm really content with the results this weekend," said an extremely happy Thomas at the end of an action-packed day at Oulton park. "It's been a great achievement for the team and me. They have been working really hard to get the bike set up right for me and we are beginning to get somewhere now. I'm hoping it won't be long before I will be stood on the podium it's so close and I know we are capable of doing it.

"I could see Michael had some kind of problem towards the end of the race as he was dropping a lot of time. I was catching him fairly fast and kept my head down in the hope that I would be able to make the time up. It wasn't to be this time but we are heading to Mondello in a couple of weeks time, the majority of the riders have only ever been there once before so it's an open minefield as to what will happen.'

Team Manager Enzo Di Clemente backed up Dean's comments. "It's been a very good weekend for us, we've made a lot of positive changes to the bike and they seemed to have paid off," he explains. "We were pleased to welcome Howard Lewis from Sendo to the race and he was very happy with the investment he has made into the team, which we are extremely grateful for. His help with the team has been fantastic and we have been lucky to gain a vast amount of press coverage so far this season. Sendo (www.sendo.co.uk) is becoming ever popular in the UK and we aim that by sponsoring our team it will give them the maximum amount of exposure."