Belfast Telegraph

Easton closes gap on battered Seeley

By Roy Harris

A tremendous Bank Holiday British Superbike meeting at Cadwell Park saw a podium finish and a crash for Tyco Suzuki star Josh Brookes but a battered and bruised Alastair Seeley dropped another five points to Stuart Easton in the Supersport Championship as he could finish only eighth.

Newtownabbey rider Andy Reid lost out on a Motostar victory by two hundredths of a second in a photo finish.

Alex Lowes stormed to a British Superbike double at both his and the Samsung Honda's home track in front of some 50,000 fans.

In race one Lowes, from pole position, rode a flawless race with an impressive front running performance.

He led the 18-lap race from halfway around lap one to the chequered flag.

A five-man freight train of riders battled hard throughout, but in the closing laps Lowes edged clear to beat series leader Shayne Byrne by a second with Brookes battling from fifth at the end of lap one to claim the final rostrum place. James Ellison slid out of fourth on lap 14.

Brookes, who was spectacular over the Cadwell Mountain section where he had the Tyco Suzuki airborne for yards, said: "It was my fault we had to start the race from the third row after I crashed in qualifying, but I made a good start and was on a race pace similar to the front runners.

"I made it through to third in the end and another podium credit."

In race two, Lowes was again the front runner but Brookes, after he had forced past Tommy Bridewell for second with three laps to go, attacked Lowes on the last lap taking the lead at Park Corner. But three corners later at Mansfield, Brookes lost the front end of the Tyco Suzuki and slid out of contention handing victory to Lowes from Bridewell, Ellison and Byrne.

P J Jacobsen, fifth in his first outing, crashed out at Charlie's unhurt on lap nine.

Seeley, suffering from a suspected broken rib from Sunday's Supersport race crash, started yesterday's race in fine style, running second to team mate Ben Wilson, but the Carrickfergus rider could not sustain his early pace and slowly dropped back to finish eighth.

Easton, his main rival, lost in a battle for third, but took another five points from Seeley's championship lead, the Gearlink Kawasaki runner is now only 22 points ahead of Easton and his Mar-Train Yamaha.

A thrilling Motostar 12-lap race saw the 4-stroke Honda of Joe Francis and the 2-stroke Honda of Andy Reid locked in race-long battle with the verdict going down to the last few yards as the pair raced to the line side by side with elbows and knees out. Francis got the verdict by two hundredths of a second.

Reid said: "I got away well at the start and Joe and I had a great race. He was quicker on some parts and I was quicker on others.

"I took the lead over the mountain on the last lap, but left the door open at the hairpin and he nipped through.

"I tried all I knew but could not get him back before the line."

Lee Johnston, after his two podiums at the Ulster Grand Prix, finished fifth in the superstock 1000cc race.

Belfast Telegraph

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