The Podium Finishers in Race Two - Photo Credit: Suzuki Racing

The Podium Finishers in Race Two - Photo Credit: Suzuki Racing

John Hopkins took the lead in the 2011 British Superbike Championship for the first time all season by winning the second race of the day at Donington Park. The American held off a determined Tommy Hill to win his fourth race of the season but his cause was helped by a first corner crash involving two of his main rivals.

As in race one, Shane Byrne made a lightning start but Michael Laverty was right alongside him as they approached Redgate. The Northern Irishman dived for the inside but left his braking point too late, sending him careering into the side of Byrne's HM Plant Honda, leaving both in the gravel trap.

The chaos at turn one allowed Hill and Hopkins to gap the rest of the field with Ryuichi Kiyonari making it a three-way dice. The reigning champion seemed rejuvenated after his mechanical problem earlier in the day but the pace at the front proved too hot, leaving him to fend off the group behind.

The decisive move at the front came on lap five as Hopkins sneaked up the inside into the Fogarty Esses, reminiscent of the pass on Laverty earlier on. Hill was unable to mount a fightback as the Crescent Suzuki proved too strong through the high-speed sections of the lap, eventually pulling out a two second lead by the finish.

Just three weeks after dislocating a finger, Hopkins was keen to thank the doctor that helped him back to full fitness but his thoughts were with his fellow countrymen on an emotional day for the United States, ten years on from the terrorist attacks in New York.

“I had the pace and put the hammer down and was able to pull a bit of a gap on Tommy. The pain in my hand was severe as the race progresses and I was pleased when I came round and saw only one lap to go on my pit-board. I have to thank the doctor for getting my fingers ready in three weeks.”

“These victories are very special as we remember the 9/11 tragedy, a special day of remembrance, it has been a fantastic day for me.”

The final podium position went to his teammate Jon Kirkham who did Hopkins a huge favour by beating Josh Brookes and the fading Kiyonari. The title challengers ended up back in fifth and sixth respectively with Brookes losing out to Martin Jessopp and Kiyonari having to fend off James Ellison in the closing stages.

After their first corner collision, Byrne and Laverty remounted to score some valuable points. Byrne made it up to eighth after passing Chris Walker while Laverty left it until the very last corner to snatch 14th from Glen Richards.

Richards finished fourth overall in the mirror.co.uk EVO class with Graeme Gowland taking his fourth win in succession ahead of James Westmoreland and Barry Burrell.

 

Race Two Result (20 Laps):

Pos Rider Nat Bike (Class) Team Time/Gap
1 John Hopkins USA Suzuki Samsung Crescent Racing 30:17.023
2 Tommy Hill GBR Yamaha Swan Yamaha +1.986
3 Jon Kirkham GBR Suzuki Samsung Crescent Racing +3.315
4 Martin Jessopp GBR Ducati Rapid Solicitors-Bathams Ducati +5.978
5 Josh Brookes AUS Suzuki Relentless Suzuki by TAS +8.324
6 Ryuichi Kiyonari JAP Honda HM Plant Honda +12.236
7 James Ellison GBR Honda Team Sorrymate.com +12.541
8 Shane Byrne GBR Honda HM Plant Honda +23.445
9 Chris Walker GBR Kawasaki Pr1mo Racing +26.308
10 Graeme Gowland GBR Honda (E) Team WFR +26.746
11 Tommy Bridewell GBR Yamaha Motorpoint Yamaha +29.051
12 James Westmoreland GBR Honda (E) Team WFR +29.698
13 Barry Burrell GBR BMW (E) Buildbase BMW Motorrad +35.631
14 Michael Laverty GBR Yamaha Swan Yamaha +37.900
15 Glen Richards AUS Honda (E) Team WFR +38.806
16 Steve Brogan GBR Honda Jentin Racing Honda +43.950
17 Gary Mason GBR Kawasaki (N) MSS Colchester Kawasaki +46.298
18 Patric Muff SWI Honda (E) Tyco Honda +59.357
19 David Anthony AUS BMW (E) Doodson Motorsport +1:01.206
20 James Hillier GBR Kawasaki (E) Bournemouth Kawasaki Racing +1:16.748
21 Lee Jackson GBR BMW Buildbase BMW Motorrad +1:17.061
22 Aaron Zanotti GBR BMW (E) Quattro Plant Spike Racing +1 Lap
Not Classified
Karl Harris GBR Aprilia Splitlath Motorsport +1 Lap
Dan Kneen GBR Kawasaki (E) Marks Bloom Racing +3 Laps
Peter Hickman GBR Honda Tyco Honda +8 Laps
Hudson Kennaugh RSA Kawasaki (E) Buy-Force.com PR Racing +9 Laps
Alex Lowes GBR Yamaha Motorpoint Yamaha +13 Laps
Craig Fitzpatrick GBR Honda (E) Paceday Z / Close Print Finance +14 Laps
Ian Lowry GBR Kawasaki MSS Colchester Kawasaki +19 Laps
Nick Medd GBR BMW Boss (D&B) Racing Non Starter
Scott Smart GBR Ducati (E) Moto Rapido Ducati Non Starter

 

(E) – Evo Class

(N) – 2012 Spec

 

Lap Leaders: Hill (1-4), Hopkins (5-20)

 

Riders Championship (After Round 10: Donington Park)

Pos Rider Nat Bike Team Wins Pts
1 John Hopkins USA Suzuki Samsung Crescent Racing 4 568
2 Tommy Hill GBR Yamaha Swan Yamaha 7 565
3 Shane Byrne GBR Honda HM Plant Honda 4 543
4 Michael Laverty GBR Yamaha Swan Yamaha 2 532
5 Josh Brookes AUS Suzuki Relentless Suzuki by TAS 1 530
6 Ryuichi Kiyonari JAP Honda HM Plant Honda 2 518
7 Jon Kirkham GBR Suzuki Samsung Crescent Racing 1 172
8 Peter Hickman GBR Honda Tyco Honda 137
9 Gary Mason GBR Kawasaki MSS Colchester Kawasaki 135
10 Michael Rutter GBR Ducati Rapid Solicitors-Bathams Ducati 130
11 Martin Jessopp GBR Ducati Rapid Solicitors-Bathams Ducati 94
12 Chris Walker GBR Kawasaki Pr1mo Racing 90
13 Loris Baz FRA Yamaha Motorpoint Yamaha 88
14 Stuart Easton GBR Kawasaki MSS Colchester Kawasaki 69
15 James Westmoreland GBR Honda Team WFR 68
16 Graeme Gowland GBR Honda Team WFR 52
17 Glen Richards AUS Honda Team WFR 51
18 Dan Linfoot GBR Honda Team Sorrymate.com 49
19 Alex Lowes GBR Yamaha Motorpoint Yamaha 46
20 Tommy Bridewell GBR Yamaha Motorpoint Yamaha 45
21 James Ellison GBR Honda Team Sorrymate.com 39
22 Ian Lowry GBR Kawasaki MSS Colchester Kawasaki 18
23 Joan Lascorz SPA Kawasaki Kawasaki World Superbike Team 17
24 Scott Smart GBR Ducati Moto Rapido Ducati 17
25 Barry Burrell GBR BMW Buildbase BMW Motorrad 11
26 Steve Brogan GBR Honda Jentin Racing Honda 8
27 Simon Andrews GBR Kawasaki Buy-Force.com PR Racing 8
28 Jake Zemke USA Honda Team WFR 8
29 Broc Parkes AUS Kawasaki Kawasaki World Superbike Team 7
30 John Laverty GBR BMW Buildbase BMW Motorrad 6
31 Patric Muff SWI Honda Tyco Honda 6
32 Hudson Kennaugh RSA Kawasaki Buy-Force.com PR Racing 5
33 Karl Harris GBR Aprilia Splitlath Motorsport 4
34 Dan Kneen GBR Kawasaki Marks Bloom Racing 3
35 Tom Tunstall GBR BMW Doodson Motorsport 1