Editorial Note: American Brandon Paasch, who is returning to ride his Dynavolt Triumph Street Triple RS 765 after breaking his right hand earlier this month, finished ninth in British Supersport Race One Saturday at Oulton Park.
Showdown drama: Mackenzie wins from Brookes as O’Halloran crashes out
The opening round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship Showdown produced high drama at Oulton Park as championship leader Jason O’Halloran crashed out after hitting the front of the pack as his teammate Tarran Mackenzie claimed the victory with a last lap move on Josh Brookes. Now just five points separate the McAMS Yamahas at the top of the standings.
At the start of the race, O’Halloran had taken the lead into Old Hall for the first time as the Showdown kicked off in Cheshire, but Brookes was instantly attacking and moved ahead before the pack streamed into Shell on the opening lap.
Championship leader O’Halloran was soon back ahead as the Australians duelled for the leading position with the McAMS Yamaha rider holding the edge on the third lap, before Brookes regained the advantage at Hizzys.
A resurgent Brookes was defending hard on the VisionTrack Ducati from O’Halloran at the front of the field, as the reigning champion bids for a late championship comeback. On the tenth lap, his McAMS Yamaha rival made a decisive move at Knickerbrook as O’Halloran regained command of the race.
However, whilst pushing to break away from Brookes, O’Halloran dramatically crashed out at Knickerbrook on lap 12, handing the lead back to his Title Fighter rival who was holding off Mackenzie, Christian Iddon and Lee Jackson.
Brookes was then defending from Mackenzie, but the McAMS Yamaha rider made his move on the brakes into Hizzys on the final lap, before claiming his sixth win of the season to move within five points of O’Halloran in the standings, slashing his advantage.
Iddon had a dash to the line to hold off Jackson to make it a double podium finish for the VisionTrack Ducati team, whilst Peter Hickman completed the top five for FHO Racing BMW.
Tommy Bridewell stormed up the order from 15th on the grid to finish sixth ahead of Danny Buchan, as the SYNETIQ BMW rider had to work his way through the pack after taking evasive action when Ryan Vickers crashed out ahead of him on the opening lap.
Glenn Irwin, Bradley Ray and Storm Stacey completed the top ten ahead of tomorrow’s two races.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Oulton Park, BikeSocial Race 1:
Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha)
Josh Brookes (VisionTrack Ducati) +0.087s
Christian Iddon (VisionTrack Ducati) +0.372s
Lee Jackson (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +0.396s
Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) +5.925s
Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +7.181s
Danny Buchan (SYNETIQ BMW) +11.476s
Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing) +12.087s
Bradley Ray (Rich Energy OMG Racing BMW) +15.058s
Storm Stacey (Team LKQ Euro Car Parts Kawasaki) +17.796s
Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Oulton Park Race 1:
Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) 1071
Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) 1066
Christian Iddon (VisionTrack Ducati) 1042
Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) 1034
Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) 1026
Danny Buchan (SYNETIQ BMW) 1023
Josh Brookes (VisionTrack Ducati) 1022
Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing) 1020
For more information on the Bennetts British Superbike Championship visit www.britishsuperbike.com
Tarran Mackenzie – McAMS Yamaha
BikeSocial Race 1 winner
“It feels great to have won that race. I said on the grid that anything can happen, and what I meant was that I could still win even though I’m injured, but I did not expect Jason to do something like that!
“He made that mistake and I felt quite comfortable at the time. Myself and Christian were passing each other and I could see that he was right behind me, so when I got past him I decided I’d try and just chase after Josh.
“I made that mistake in the first chicane and then I just thought ‘if I back off here Christian’s going to pass me, then Lee could pass me or I can just keep going’.
“I was on the limit, but I felt comfortable doing it. Josh just had a slight moment at that first chicane on the last lap, but what I lose out of the first chicane with that moment of his, just allowed me to stay with him.
“I got the drive on him over the hill to make that pass and I had run wide a couple of times there in the race, so I just made sure I got it stopped. I then defended in the last couple of corners and came across the line to win which is amazing.
“I’ve won here in the other classes and it’s been really annoying that I haven’t been able to win here in Superbike – I haven’t even had a podium! I’m really happy with that and I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”
More, from a press release issued by Dynavolt Triumph:
Solid Top ten for Paasch in Oulton Park comeback
From his qualifying position on the seventh row of the grid, Dynavolt Triumph’s Brandon Paasch shrugged off his injury concerns in today’s 12-lap Quattro Group British Supersport Sprint Race, coming through the field from nineteenth to ninth position at the chequered flag.
Brandon Paasch: “I’m feeling a bit sore, a bit stiff but it was a good race, I’m happy to get the first one out of the way. Good points so not bad, I’m happy enough with it. I moved up on the grid for tomorrow’s race so try again tomorrow. Push on.”
Stand-in teammate, Danny Webb started the day promisingly with a stunning second place in a damp but drying qualifying session in the morning. The conditions had changed to completely dry for the Sprint Race in the late afternoon and although Webb got a good start in second he was mobbed into Hislops, demoting him several places and he crossed the line in eleventh place.
Danny Webb: “Today we had a good day, obviously in the race I was a bit disappointed in how far I dropped back but I just needed more experience on the bike and the circuit. We went two seconds faster than yesterday, that’s a positive so we’ll keep working for tomorrow and hopefully improve again.”
Dynavolt Triumph Team Manager Simon Buckmaster: “Brandon didn’t qualify so good but he kept at it and worked through the field. He’s done well, he’s got nowhere near the full strength in the wrist though so it was a good performance to be ninth. We’ll see what changes we can make for him for tomorrow.”
“Great qualifying for Danny in second place in drying conditions. On lap one of the race just going into the chicane he got pushed a little bit wide and lost a lot of places then had to try and get in the groove. As we knew we are just learning things today as we’ve had virtually no dry track time, just 25 minutes so we’ll make some changes, make another step in warm up and in the race tomorrow. Obviously we want to run at the front but we have to be realistic and we’ll see what we can do tomorrow.”