Michael Laverty - Photo Credit: Motorsport Vision

Michael Laverty - Photo Credit: Motorsport Vision


Michael Laverty became the seventh different winner in eight races at the start of the 2012 British Superbike Championship with a lights-to-flag victory in race two at Snetterton. The Ulsterman's race was made slightly easier by a technical failure for Tommy Hill's Swan Yamaha but the victory was timely for his showdown hopes and thoroughly deserved.

Setting the fastest lap in race one gave Laverty pole for race two and he duly converted it into the lead at turn one. Shane Byrne came from the outside of the front row to grab second from Hill but an error at Montreal released the defending champion back into second, with Josh Brookes also sneaking through.

Noriyuki Haga demoted the Kawasaki to fifth soon afterwards but things started to unravel for Swan Yamaha on lap four as Hill slowed, raising his arm to alert the following riders to the problem on his bike. Haga briefly moved up to third as a result but crashed out at Murrays little over a lap after his teammate's demise, leaving Shaun Muir's squad without a point from race two.

The top three were well clear with Byrne back ahead of Brookes for second but plenty was going on in the chasing pack. Haga's fall had promoted Tommy Bridewell to fourth but any hopes Supersonic Racing had of points disappeared on lap six as the Wiltshire rider highsided his BMW at Agostini.

Alex Lowes now moved up to fourth but as in race one, he wouldn't stay there. This time, he would fall prey to the Padgetts Honda of Ian Lowry who ducked underneath the youngster at Coram. Lowes couldn't console himself with fifth either as teammate Graeme Gowland overhauled him four laps from home.

Laverty eased off in the closing stages to win by 1.3 seconds, a margin of victory which would've been far greater had the Samsung Honda pushed to the limit. Byrne and Brookes completed the podium with the latter taking the championship lead, while Lowry claimed fourth ahead of the duelling WFR Hondas. Chris Walker beat Stuart Easton to seventh with James Westmoreland and Patric Muff rounding out the top ten.