Billy McConnell makes triumphant return to SSTK1000
Levi Day wins Ducati TriOptions Cup Race 1
Supersport Race 1
Ben Currie claimed the opening Dickies British Supersport Championship race at Donington Park, snatching the win from Jack Kennedy on the final lap. It was Currie who grabbed the holeshot, holding off an opening lap challenge from Kennedy to lead across the line ahead of Kennedy and Bradley Jones.
By lap two, James Westmoreland had moved up to third but it was short lived as James Rispoli moved into the final rostrum position on his return back to Supersport racing. Disaster would strike just laps later though as he crashed out unhurt in spectacular fashion at Craner Curves.
Kennedy took over front running at the half way point and was able to extend a small lead over Currie, however the fast charging Australian chipped away over the closing laps to make a move on the final lap and secure the first Supersport win of 2018. Completing the podium in third was Ross Twyman, whilst the leading British GP2 Cup machine was Jorel Boerboom.
British Supersport Championship, Donington Park – Race 1
Ben Currie (Gearlink Kawasaki)
Jack Kennedy (Integro Yamaha) +0.269s
Ross Twyman (EHA Racing Yamaha) +14.653s
Tom Oliver (SGR Racing Yamaha) +14.836s
James Westmoreland (Gearlink Kawasaki) +15.321s
Tommy Philp (Draper Racing Yamaha) +16.106s
British Supersport Championship Standings after Race 1
Ben Currie (Gearlink Kawasaki) 25
Jack Kennedy (Integro Yamaha) 20
Ross Twyman (EHA Racing Yamaha) 16
Tom Oliver (SGR Racing Yamaha) 13
James Westmoreland (Gearlink Kawasaki) 11
Tommy Philp (Draper Racing Yamaha) 10
Superstock 1000 Race 1 & 2
Billy McConnell made a strong 2018 return from injury, taking victory in both parts of the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 race at Donington Park, with Keith Farmer and Josh Elliott joining him on the podium. Part one saw a race long battle between McConnell, Elliott and rookie rider Andy Reid.
Trading places throughout the opening nine laps, Reid crashed out of contention leaving McConnell, Elliott and Keith Farmer to claim the podium positions in Race 1.
With the grid for part two decided by the finishing positions of the opening race, it was Elliott who grabbed the holeshot to lead at the end of the opening lap ahead of McConnell and Dan Kneen.
Wasting no time however, McConnell powered his Suzuki into the lead on lap three where he was able to pull away from the pursing pack. Farmer moved up into second on lap five with Elliott holding third until the red flag came out on lap 11 and the result declared.
Sam Clarke competed in both Superstock 1000 races, taking 14th in Race 1, and a DNF result in Race 2, in a mixed weekend which showed potential.
Superstock 1000 Race 1
Billy McCONNELL Buildbase Suzuki 20:05.920
Josh ELLIOTT Morello Racing Kawasaki 5.568
Keith FARMER Tyco BMW Motorrad 9.734
Joe COLLIER EHA Racing 10.120
Alastair SEELEY Stauff Quick Connect Academy 15.284
Chrissy ROUSE Team IMR 16.540
Dan KNEEN Tyco BMW Motorrad 16.742
Fraser ROGERS Mission Racing 16.834
Michael RUTTER Bathams Racing 19.234
Luke HEDGER Lloyd & Jones Bowker Motorrad 22.581
Superstock 1000 Race 2
Billy McCONNELL Buildbase Suzuki 15:23.119
Keith FARMER Tyco BMW Motorrad 2.744
Josh ELLIOTT Morello Racing Kawasaki 4.134
Dan KNEEN Tyco BMW Motorrad 4.409
Alastair SEELEY Stauff Quick Connect Academy 4.773
Chrissy ROUSE Team IMR 8.937
Joe COLLIER EHA Racing 9.505
Fraser ROGERS Mission Racing 9.579
Michael RUTTER Bathams Racing 10.206
Jordan GILBERT Team IMR 14.884
Ducati TriOptions Cup Race 1
Two Ducati Cup newcomers lined up at the front of the grid for Race 1 at Donington Park, with Lewis Rollo (Highsparks Motorsport) on pole and Sam Coventry (AOR / YESSS Electrical Racing) in 2nd place.
It was Levi Day (Boast Plumbing) who got the holeshot from 3rd as the lights went out and although briefly passed by Rollo, went on to lead the race for the subsequent 8 laps until the chequered flag came out.
“Stoked to get the win today in Race 1 of the season! I tried to use my head and ride to the extremely cold track conditions. My wife, family, team and sponsors have been amazing in the support they give me and it is a big team effort, that they deserve this more than I do. My father in law Steve Brooks built this bike for me over the winter and it’s fair to say I’m pretty impressed with it! Weather is looking dismal tomorrow, but will give it my all.”
Sean Neary (Zoek Racing Team) was able to pass Josh Wainwright (Boast Plumbing) and Rollo to sit in 2nd place by half race distance.
But despite Neary closing the gap to Day to just 0.8s on the final lap, Rollo managed to make a pass to claim a 2nd place finish with Neary taking the last podium position.
“Well, obviously managed to get on pole yesterday, so we were over the moon with that. First round and first time out on the Ducati and I’ve not done any dry laps round here on the Ducati. Got a good start and got past Levi. But him and Neary just passed me straight away. I tagged on to them and watched where they were quicker, got quicker on the dry and manged to close up on them and managed to make a move on the last lap. So just over the moon. Podium in the first round and couldn’t ask for any better.”
“To be fair I’m happy enough with that. I left Round 1 last year with zero points so to get a third I’m happy. Obviously, I wanted the win and I was pushing in the middle of the race. But to be fair to Levi, he didn’t make a mistake. He was hitting every apex.I lost the front with about 3 laps to go and that was a bit of a warning. I pushed on again and gave it a last push and I ran on at the chicane and Lewis got underneath but fair play. But, good result and I’m happy with that. Onwards.”
Wainwright finished 4th, Rob Guiver (Ducati Romford / Hyside Racing) – returning to the series following a nasty injury sustained at Brands Hatch last year – finished 5th with Coventry 6th.
Rollo’s Highsparks teammates Mark Cheetham and Phil Atkinson finished 7th and 8th respectively, David Shoubridge (Old Garage Legends Racing) 9th, with another newcomer Dijon Compton completing the top 10 finishers.
Rollo lines up on pole for Race 2 tomorrow, with Day and Neary locking out the front row.
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