O’halloran Victorious As Glenn Irwin Crashes Out Of Podium ContentionJason O’Halloran claimed his fifth win of the 2021 Bennetts British Superbike Championship season, after leading Christian Iddon by 2.433s as the race was red flagged when Glenn Irwin crashed out of the podium fight, unhurt.

O’Halloran got an incredible start from pole position to grab the lead ahead of Irwin and Peter Hickman, however a crash on the opening lap for Kyle Ryde and Joe Francis bought out the BMW Safety Car. Both riders were able to walk away from the crash, and the race resumed on lap four.

O’Halloran controlled the pace at the front, breaking away from the pack in the later stages of the race to build a more comfortable buffer before the race was halted. This leaves him just a single point adrift of Christian Iddon in the overall standings ahead of tomorrow’s two races.

Prior to his accident, Irwin was right in the fight for the podium, holding second position ahead of Hickman and Iddon in the opening stages with Ryan Vickers in contention too.

On lap five, Hickman’s FHO Racing BMW machine moved into second. Honda Racing’s Irwin was then pushed back a further place into fourth as Iddon then made a move, drafting through on the VisionTrack Ducati.

Iddon then pushed Hickman for second place, making a move at the Chicane as the battle intensified for the podium. It was a battle between Iddon, Hickman and Irwin for the final two places inside the top three as O’Halloran made his break at the front.

Irwin was soon up to third, as he produced a stunning move around the outside at the Chicane on lap 13. His progress came to a sudden end a lap later though as he crashed out at 119mph. With his stricken Honda Fireblade in the track, the race was red flagged. Irwin was able to walk away from the incident, whilst his rivals Iddon and Hickman climbed onto the podium.

Vickers had his best result in fourth place for the RAF Regular & Reserve Kawasaki team, holding off Lee Jackson who completed the top five for FS-3 Racing Kawasaki, with four manufacturers in the top four positions.

Danny Kent was another rider to secure his best result in Bennetts BSB in sixth place for the Buildbase Suzuki team, ahead of Bradley Ray and Gino Rea.

Tarran Mackenzie was running sixth, but a cut of the Chicane meant the McAMS Yamaha rider was given a 2-second long lap equivalent time penalty, ending up in ninth place with Tommy Bridewell completing the top-ten.

It was another disappointing race for reigning champion Josh Brookes; he was outside the points in 17th place.

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, BikeSocial Race 1 result:

1.    Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha)
2.    Christian Iddon (VisionTrack Ducati) +2.433s
3.    Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) +2.836s
4.    Ryan Vickers (RAF Regular & Reserve Kawasaki) +4.129s
5.    Lee Jackson (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +4.397s
6.    Danny Kent (Buildbase Suzuki) +5.090s
7.    Bradley Ray (Rich Energy OMG Racing BMW) +5.186s
8.    Gino Rea (Buildbase Suzuki) +5.581s
9.    Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) +6.747s
10.    Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +11.175s

Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Thruxton Race 1:

1.    Christian Iddon (VisionTrack Ducati) 183
2.    Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha)182
3.    Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) 144
4.    Danny Buchan (SYNETIQ BMW) 133
5.    Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) 106
6.    Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) 89
7.    Rory Skinner (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) 88
8.    Lee Jackson (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) 84

Jason O’Halloran – McAMS Yamaha
BikeSocial Race 1 winner

“Normally throughout practice you will have done a long run. I did one this morning, but it was straight out of the pits and it was first bit of dry track time all weekend, so it was a bit of an unknown.

“The pace was definitely faster than what I thought it would be, not from trying to do that, but it just came to me and I thought while the pace is there and the tyre feels good, I’ll just keep doing my thing.

“The gap to the guys behind me was staying constant for about the first five or six laps and I saw it start to grow, so I just wanted to keep my pace and try to get away.

“It was a comfortable win, but it certainly was never easy. I didn’t have to block too much, didn’t have to worry about the guys behind me, which is a nice feeling.

“I think tomorrow’s race might be a bit slower, another five or six laps is a lot around here when the tyre starts to drop, so we’ll see what tomorrow brings. All the guys will improve again and so we need to do the same for tomorrow.”

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