Lee Johnston warmed-up for next week’s North West 200 in style with another podium in the British Supersport Championship at Oulton Park yesterday.
The Ashcourt Racing Yamaha rider finished third in Sunday’s Sprint race at the Cheshire circuit when he hit a false neutral, hampering his prospects of claiming the runner-up spot as he battled with young gun Bradley Perie (Appleyard Macadam Yamaha).
Johnston, though, set the fastest lap of the race and started from pole in the Feature race at the Bank Holiday meeting.
The 33-year-old was able to pressurise championship leader Jack Kennedy in the early stages before the Mar-Train Yamaha rider edged away, eventually going on to win by over eight seconds as he maintained his unbeaten start to the series for Northern Ireland’s Mar-Train Yamaha team.
Johnston set a new lap record on his way to the runner-up spot and the Fermanagh man is now looking ahead to the North West, where he earned a Supersport victory in 2019.
“I’ve loved being back in the British championship with no road racing happening, but just because I’ve grabbed the odd headline here or there doesn’t mean I’m any sharper than anyone else,” Johnston said.
“The other guys that I class as my rivals – the likes of Dean (Harrison) and Peter Hickman – have been doing BSB as well; everyone’s been racing somewhere, whether it’s in BSB or whatever, so I don’t think it makes me any more of a favourite.”
In the British Superbike Championship, Honda Racing’s Glenn Irwin was demoted to second place in the standings after finishing 11th, ninth and seventh.
Irwin, who claimed his maiden BSB treble last month at Silverstone to lead the championship, is now six points behind OMG Yamaha’s Bradley Ray.
Ray won the first two races but was denied a hat-trick by Lee Jackson on the FS-3 Kawasaki, who celebrated his first BSB victory.
Andrew Irwin was 12th in Sunday’s race on the SYNETIQ BMW but the Carrickfergus man crashed out of both races yesterday.
Round three of the championship takes place at Donington Park after the North West 200 from May 20-22.