Jake Dixon breaks through for BSB Superbike wins at Knockhill
Luke Mossey now a title favourite with 30-point buffer over injured Haslam
Jason O’Halloran takes 4th and 7th place finishes – Lies fifth in championship chase
Challenging weekend for Brookes but still sixth on the BSB points table
Images by Jon Jessop
2017 MCE British Superbike Championship – Round Four – Knockhill
Jake Dixon propelled himself into the premier league of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship at Knockhill on Sunday as the RAF Reserves Kawasaki rider followed up his debut win in the opening race to make it a double after an epic second contest in Scotland.
Dixon got his day off to a flying start in the opening race, celebrating a classy debut win in race one as the RAF Reserves Kawasaki rider hit the front of the chasing pack and held off Luke Mossey to seal an emotional victory.
On the opening lap Dixon fired off the front row of the grid to lead the pack as Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne and Jason O’Halloran clipped on the run into turn one for the first time, pushing them down the order.
At the front James Ellison was tucked in behind Dixon with Mossey in close contention, but O’Halloran had made back some places and he was soon on the attack and by the start of lap four, the pair had pushed Ellison back to fourth.
Ellison fought back a lap later at the Hairpin to pass O’Halloran, but on lap six the McAMS Yamaha rider slid out of contention at turn three. O’Halloran was soon coming under pressure from his Honda Racing team-mate Dan Linfoot; the Australian was pushed back a place at the Hairpin, but on the brakes Linfoot lost the front end and tipped out of contention.
The leading pair of Dixon and Mossey had edged an advantage but the battle for third then became a three-way fight between O’Halloran, Byrne and home hero Taylor Mackenzie who was having his strongest performance of the season for Bennetts Suzuki.
Byrne was pushing to make a move and on lap 16 the Be Wiser Ducati rider emerged ahead after a decisive move at the Hairpin. The defending champion was able to hold off O’Halloran to the chequered flag to cross the line third behind Dixon and Mossey.
Mackenzie scored his best result in fifth place with Peter Hickman moving to sixth for Smiths Racing BMW after Bradley Ray crashed put unhurt on the Buildbase Suzuki. John Hopkins ended the race in seventh place for Moto Rapido Ducati with Sylvain Guintoli, Lee Jackson and Michael Laverty completing the top ten.
Dixon then further cemented himself as a Showdown contender by following up his debut win in the opening race to make it a double after an epic second contest in Scotland.
Dixon had hit the front of the field on the opening lap to stake his claim from the start, holding off Mossey and Ellison with Linfoot and Byrne in the hunt. The opening laps saw an incredible dice between the leading group with Mossey and Ellison exchanging blows five times in one lap as they battled for the advantage at the front.
As the lead continued to change Dixon then made his move and he was defending hard until the seventh lap when Mossey then reclaimed the position at the front of the field. As the RAF Reserves Kawasaki rider bid to make a counter attack, Ellison then fired his McAMS Yamaha into second place with Byrne stalking in fourth.
Byrne and Dixon were then inseparable and the defending champion made a move to put himself back into a podium position and relegate the race one winner into fourth place. At the front Mossey had edged a marginal lead but the JG Speedfit Kawasaki lost the ground with a mistake and it allowed his rivals to return to striking distance.
Ellison was first to take the advantage as the McAMS Yamaha hit the front to push Mossey back to second as Dixon moved to third to push Byrne back into fourth as the final five lap sprint beckoned.
Dixon then made a decisive move on Mossey to push the new championship leader back into third and into the clutches of Byrne, who waited until the final two laps to make his move and return to the podium for the second time today.
Dixon stalked Ellison and a last gasp attempt to make a move for the win put the young gun ahead which he held to the chequered flag to claim his second win ahead of Ellison and Byrne. Mossey narrowly missed out on the podium with Brookes returning to the top five for the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha team.
“I’ve never had a podium in the Superbike class before this weekend so to leave with two race wins has left me a bit speechless to be honest, I can’t believe it! Qualifying well is one thing but to do it in a race is a totally different ball game even if I did feel confident that I had the pace. It was hard leading from the front in the first race but the gap kept going up and it was almost like I was floating out there so I just tried to keep as focused and as calm as possible. I had a bit of a slide at the hairpin towards the end so backed it off a bit and brought the bike home for a dream win.
“We didn’t change a single thing on the bike for race two and I knew what pace I had so when I could see some of the riders sliding around, I knew I was in a good position as my bike was on rails and not using nowhere near the same amount of rubber. I let the race come to me and made my moves in the last third of the race but having taken the double, it’s hard to describe how I’m feeling right now. It’ll take a while to sink in but a massive thank you to the whole team and the sponsors and to all my family.”
Linfoot was the leading Honda Racing contender in sixth place, just ahead of his team-mate O’Halloran with Michael Laverty, Hickman and Billy McConnell completing the top ten.
Jason O’Halloran secured 22 vital championship points at Knockhill and is sitting fifth overall in the British Superbike standings. Next up BSB heads to Snetterton on 30 June – 2 July, a place that holds fond memories for the 29-year-old as he scored his maiden BSB Superbike win at Snetterton last year.
“We’re coming away from Knockhill with a fourth and a seventh, it’s not the best but it’s certainly not the worst, we’re coming away with a bunch of points and now sit fifth in the championship. So from that side it is good and definitely positive, but I always struggle here and it’s a tough circuit for me for some reason, I can never quite find that last tenth I need.
“It was like it in the second race and I just couldn’t do anymore, we need to rethink things for here next year, as the way I ride the Fireblade doesn’t seem to suit the track. But at the end of the day we have done the best job we can; we’re coming away with a bunch of points and can now go to Snetterton feeling positive with what we’re taking away from this weekend. At the test a few weeks ago we were fastest at Snetterton and I claimed my first win there last year, so hopefully we can repeat this and get back to the top.”
“I knew coming into this round it was going to be a difficult event, I don’t know if it’s the Yamaha, myself or my riding style but I had a difficult weekend here in 2015 so I anticipated this weekend was going to be tough again, and I knew I’d need all the help I could get. Every session I went out in I did the best I could but I just didn’t find my rhythm and we’re still missing something. To get away from the weekend without injury and to salvage the points that we did is not satisfactory but we’ll have to accept it. We’re still working on things with the bike and we’re working on the setup and we’ve made a step forward this weekend, but I’m expecting to see the value of everything next time out.”
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Knockhill, race one result
Jake Dixon (RAF Reserves Kawasaki)
Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +3.740s
Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +6.159s
Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +6.670s
Taylor Mackenzie (Bennetts Suzuki) +9.907s
Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +13.730s
John Hopkins (Moto Rapido Ducati) +15.038s
Sylvain Guintoli (Bennetts Suzuki) +17.152s
Lee Jackson (Smiths Racing BMW) +17.481s
Michael Laverty (McAMS Yamaha) +21.952s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Knockhill, Race two result
Jake Dixon (RAF Reserves Kawasaki)
James Ellison (McAMS Yamaha) +0.437s
Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +1.473s
Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +2.201s
Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) +4.610s
Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +5.502s
Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +5.571s
Michael Laverty (McAMS Yamaha) +6.995s
Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +9.341s
Billy McConnell (Quattro Plant FS-3 Kawasaki) +10.022s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings after Knockhill
Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 141
Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 111
Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 90
Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) 86
Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) 83
Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) 78
British Supersport Feature Race – Knockhill 2017
Keith Farmer made it two Dickies British Supersport victories in a row at Knockhill, passing Andrew Irwin at the final hairpin on the final lap.
It was Irwin who grabbed the holeshot, leading Farmer in a tense game of follow the leader right up until the final corner, where the Team Appleyard Macadam Racing Yamaha rider slipped through to double up on victories.
The battle for third saw multiple riders take their turn to hold the final podium spot, with Benjamin Currie holding the position for the majority of the race but it was David Allingham who took the rostrum at the finish line.
After a storming ride through the pack, the race ended in disaster for Joe Francis as he crashed out from fourth. Jack Kennedy eventually secured fourth with Australia’s Ben Currie fifth.
Sam Clarke crossed the line in seventh place and has now moved into the British Supersport Championship top ten.
Dickies British Supersport, Knockhill Feature Race Results
Keith Farmer (Team Appleyard Macadam Racing Yamaha)
Andrew Irwin (Gearlink Kawasaki) +0.101s
David Allingham (EHA Racing Yamaha) +4.799s
Jack Kennedy (GAC Logistics MV Augusta) +6.074s
Benjamin Currie (Gearlink Kawasaki) +8.397s
Ross Twyman (EHA Racing Yamaha) +15.639
Sam Clarke (Pacedayz Yamaha) +26.868
Dickies British Supersport Championship Standings after Knockhill
Tarran Mackenzie 150
David Allingham 123
Keith Farmer 120
Andrew Irwin 115
Benjamin Currie 103
Jack Kennedy 84
Ross Twyman 69
Joe Francis 57
Jamie Perrin 45
Sam Clarke 36
British Superstock 1000 Race Two – Knockhill 2017
Danny Buchan doubled up on wins in the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 Championship at Knockhill to extend his lead in the series to 33 points.
Grabbing the holeshot, the Morello Racing Kawasaki rider was able to control the race from the front.
Behind him, Chrissy Rouse bounced back from his crash in the opening race to claim second place whilst Richard Cooper completed the podium in third.
Mason Law took fourth place, with yesterday’s podium man Michael Rutter in fifth.
Brayden Elliott just missed out on the points after crossing the line 16th place, 23.49-seconds behind race winner Danny Buchan after the 24-lap distance.
British Superstock 1000 Race Two Results
Danny Buchan Kawasaki
Chrissy Rouse BMW +0.763
Richard Cooper Suzuki +2.184
Mason Law Kawasaki +4.472
Michael Rutter BMW +4.734
Fraser Rogers Kawasaki +5.217
Matthew Paulo Yamaha +9.379
Lewis Rollo Kawasaki +11.286
Alex Olsen Suzuki +11.914
Adam Jenkinson BMW +12.124
Barry Teasdale BMW +14.424
Carl Phillips Suzuki +14.487
Sam West BMW +20.042
Paul McClung BMW +20.528
Tom Tunstall BMW +21.769
Brayden Elliott Yamaha +23.492
Leon Jeacock Suzuki +24.732
British Superstock 1000 Championship Points Standings
Danny Buchan 161
Richard Cooper 128
Michael Rutter 95.5
British Superstock 600 – Knockhill 2017
Mission Racing’s Jordan Gilbert cruised to his first victory of the season in an action-packed Pirelli National Superstock 600 race at Knockhill.
Tom Neave held an early lead, but moving through on the fourth lap Gilbert was able to pull away from the pursuing pack to take the win.
It was drama behind him however, as Brad Jones was the first to crash out of a podium position as he slipped off on lap ten whilst running third before George Stanley crashed from second place just eight laps later.
Neave crossed the line in second with rookie rider Ryan Watson claiming his maiden Superstock 600 podium in third. Championship leader Dan Stamper was fourth.
South Australia’s Arthur Sissis bagged another nine points to move up to fourth overall in the British Superstock 600 Championship standings.
British Superstock 600 Championship Points – Knockhill 2017
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