Belfast Telegraph

Sports Awards

Glenn Irwin stays in championship chase with pair of Brands Hatch podiums


By Roy Harris

Glenn Irwin (PBM Be Wiser Ducati) may not have been able to turn pole position into race wins during yesterday's sixth round of the British Superbike Championship around the 2.433-mile Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit, but the Carrickfergus rider secured his first double podium with two superb second place finishes behind former champion Josh Brookes (McAms Yamaha) to maintain third place in the championship chase.

Yamaha were celebrating 20 years of their R1 model and Brookes' victories in their special anniversary livery was fitting reward.

Irwin lost race one by less than a quarter of a second after 20 laps, making a last lap charge, and came even closer in race two, nine one hundredths of a second behind Brookes at the chequered flag having closed on to his rear wheel with a lap to go.

"In race one I left my challenge too late," Irwin said afterwards. "We played a bit of a game as the track was so hot (49°) we couldn't run our normal times and saving tyres for the final push.

"Race two was much faster and we were both stronger in different parts of the circuit. It was important to stay third in the championship and I can celebrate my first double podium."

Tyco BMW had Christian Iddon finish fifth and sixth in the two races with Michael Laverty 10th in race one and 11th in race two coming from 20th position after getting forced wide at Druids on the opening lap.

Andrew Irwin finished ninth and 12th as he continues to get to grips with the PBM Be Wiser Superbike Ducati.

Eglington's David Allingham scored his first British Supersport victory yesterday after Ben Currie led for 17 of the 18 laps before mechanical problems forced him to slow and limp around the last lap to finish fourth.

The race saw the two Kalex GP2 machines of Kyle Ryde and Josh Owens finish 1-2 on the road, but score no points, meaning a delighted Allingham, third on the road, took the 25 points for the race victory. Allingham who finished second behind Currie in Saturday's sprint race, said: "I feel sorry for Ben, he had that race in the bag. I just could not get any grip at all. I had a hard start to the season and everybody was giving me a difficult time.

"We went back to last years machine at Knockhill and we've turned things around. This is for all my sponsors for their support through the hard times."

Alastair Seeley's return to the class on the Tsingtao MV Agusta didn't go as planned. He retired from Saturday's race and finishing fifth yesterday, coming from 15th on the opening lap.

Superstock 1000 had three races over the weekend with Keith Farmer having a roller-coaster of a time. The Clogher rider finished second in race one, crashed out of race two when his Tyco BMW seized and was second again yesterday, despite gravel rash on his arm, to lead the championship by 13 points from EHA Aprilia rider Joe Collier. Collier won both Saturday races, but crashed out spectacularly on the opening lap yesterday resulting in a five rider pile-up that included Lisburn's Carl Phillips. Luckily no rider suffered serious injuries.

Eugene McManus crashed out of Saturday's opening Motostar race on the opening lap but recovered yesterday to finish seventh on his KTM.

In the Superstock 600cc 14-lap race Aaron Clifford finished third, Korie McGreevy from Ballynahinch was fifth and Kevin Keyes sixth.

Belfast Telegraph

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