Leon Haslam finally clinches elusive Bennetts British Superbike title

Leon Haslam celebrated his first Bennetts British Superbike Championship title victory at Brands Hatch this afternoon, crossing the line in a safe sixth place to have the edge over Jake Dixon into tomorrow’s two races.

It was Glenn Irwin though who was victorious for the first time this season for Be Wiser Ducati, becoming the sixth different race winner of the year, with Dixon and Tarran Mackenzie completing the podium in the opening race to the triple-header weekend.

At the start of the race Glenn Irwin launched off the line to lead the pack into Paddock Hill Bend from Dixon and Mackenzie with Peter Hickman and Andrew Irwin in close contention. Superbike rookie Mackenzie had a big moment on the McAMS Yamaha on the third lap and that dropped him down the order.

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On the fifth lap Richard Cooper and Tommy Bridewell crashed out unhurt at Druids, the pair had been running inside the top eight, with Jason O’Halloran crashing out a lap later at Graham Hill Bend.

Meanwhile at the front Andrew Irwin moved into second place on the seventh lap to put both of the Be Wiser Ducatis ahead of the chasing pack. Dixon wasn’t giving up without a fight though an he stalked the younger Irwin brother before making a decisive move with four laps to go.

Mackenzie then had Andrew Irwin in his sights too and he went for a dive down the inside at Surtees with two laps remaining to fire the McAMS Yamaha back into podium contention. At the front though Glenn Irwin had the edge to hold off Dixon and Mackenzie to the chequered flag as Andrew Irwin equalled his best finish of the season.

Peter Hickman held on to fifth place for Smiths Racing BMW ahead of Haslam who had done enough to become British champion after a season that has seen him score 14 race wins and only failed to finish off the podium four times.

Haslam was ahead of 2015 title-winner Josh Brookes and James Ellison with Danny Buchan edging out Michael Laverty to complete the top ten.

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, Race 1 result:

  1. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati)
  2. Jake Dixon (RAF Regular & Reserves Kawasaki)   +1.901s
  3. Tarran Mackenzie  (McAMS Yamaha) +2.462s
  4. Andrew Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) +3.597s
  5. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +5.122s
  6. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +6.185s
  7. Josh Brookes (McAMS Yamaha) +8.954s
  8. James Ellison (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) +10.808s
  9. Danny Buchan (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +15.198s
  10. Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +20.702s

Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Brands Hatch, Race 1:

  1. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 664
  2. Jake Dixon (RAF Regular & Reserves Kawasaki) 613
  3. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) 579
  4. Josh Brookes (McAMS Yamaha) 566
  5. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) 560
  6. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki) 538

For more information visit www.britishsuperbike.com

Leon Haslam
(JG Speedfit Kawasaki)
2018 Bennetts BSB champion

“It’s like a big weight’s been lifted off my shoulders. Honestly it was kind-of one of those races I knew I didn’t need to push on, I needed to stay out of trouble. I got really pushed out wide in turn two and then it was Cooper I think crashed out in front of me and I was just like ‘stay out of trouble, stay out of trouble’.

“I saw Jake wasn’t leading so I knew top seven was good enough and I was running in sixth with a big gap. I wanted to have a go at Hicky and Tarran to try and get on that podium but I just didn’t want to risk it.

“After the last few years, I just wanted to bring it home and tomorrow I can enjoy now. I can go out and have a bit of fun. That last lap felt like an eternity, it was a long old race! It’s been one of those years, it’s gone so well and I’m so grateful to everyone around me.”

British Superbike

FORMER Snetterton WINNER Laverty STANDS in For Farmer at Norfolk Venue 1Yamaha unveils the new 2020 YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M 3Buchan claims first Bennetts BSB win as Scott lands race two victory 1Saturday Fife Fever for Fores with first Bennetts BSB pole position 1Redding leads the way in free practice at Knockhill 1Ben Currie to Join Glenn Irwin at Knockhill 1Bridewell leads the pack with Brookes set to fight for Integro Triple Crown prize 2Brookes reigns supreme to be crowned King of Brands after winning double 1Redding snatches it at Brands by 0.007s to claim first Bennetts BSB pole position 1Brookes back on top at Brands Hatch after opening day in Kent 1Bennetts BSB contenders set for King of Brands battle 1LAW RETURNS WITH QUATTRO TEAM ABM GP2 BIKE AT BRANDS HATCH 1Donington Park delight for Redding with hat trick victories 1Redding becomes 50th different race winner by celebrating first Bennetts BSB victory 1Farmer heads the field as top 18 riders covered by 0.8s at Donington Park 1Hector Barbera to Line Up Alongside Irwin for BSB Debut 1New layout but who will hit the jackpot at Donington Park triple-header 1Josh Brookes does the double at Oulton Park 1Brookes under the lap record to claim Oulton Park pole position 1Brookes ups the pace to set his best ever lap of Oulton Park to lead free practice 1New blood leads the hunt to Oulton Park as Elliott and Mackenzie head the pack 1Josh Brookes back on top at official test ahead of Oulton Park 1First wins for Elliott and Mackenzie in dramatic Silverstone opener! 1Tarran Mackenzie claims first Bennetts BSB pole position as Redding debuts on the front row 1Jason O'Halloran leads the pack at Silverstone 1



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