James Toseland made up for his first race disappointment by narrowly beating his team-mate Chris Walker across the line at the end of the second race at Phillip Island.

It was a close, exciting race at the front of the field and in a tense dice for fifth place featuring the HM Plant Ducati team-mates and Gregorio Lavilla. Neil Hodgson clinched a narrow victory from Ducati Corse team-mate Ruben Xaus, while the battle continued just outside the podium placings.

The duel between Toseland, Walker and Lavilla went down to the last lap and a desperate dash around the 4.445km circuit for the 22nd time. The three combatants came out of the last corner side-by-side with the power down as much as they dared in the sprint to the chequered flag. With all three machines sliding on to the Gardner Straight, Lavilla was behind the HM Plant Ducati duo but wasn't able to out-drag them over the finishing line in an amazing photo-finish.

Toseland was elated to have won his personal battle over Walker and Lavilla. "That was better," he said after a frantic Australian Superbike World Championship round. "I was gutted at losing points in the first race, but this has gone some way to making up for it. That was brilliant fun out there and I was able to really get down to some hard riding on the HM Plant Ducati. There's only eight points between Chris and I now - I'll be hoping to close the gap when we go to the next round in Japan."

Walker was left to reflect on the closest of finishes in a tense HM Plant Ducati duel: "That was a fantastic race between James and I. Dicing with my team-mate is already becoming a feature of the 2003 season and I think that British fans are in for a real treat. That is what racing is all about and in many ways it made up for the frustration shared by the team in the first leg. We deserved better luck for all the hard work we have put into the preparations for this event."

Sixth place was enough for Chris Walker to establish a four-point advantage over Lavilla for third place in the overall points table after two rounds of the 2003 Superbike World Championship.