BSB Final Weekend: Vital Pole Goes To Lowes

by Louis Suddaby

Alex Lowes maintained his 100& pole position record in the British Superbike Championship showdown by upsetting Shane Byrne at his home circuit. The WFR Honda rider heads into this weekend’s deciding triple header at Brands Hatch with a 24 point deficit but a repeat of his qualifying dominance could see that gap shrink before tomorrow.

None of the title contenders slipped up in Q1 although Luca Scassa brought the red flags out after crashing at Stirlings. The Italian was unhurt and would even go on to make the cut when the session resumed while Karl Harris would do likewise despite a fall at Westfield.

The first championship challenger but the dust in Q2 with Tommy Bridewell unable to do better than thirteenth but considering his build-up to qualifying, that was still quite an achievement. The Supersonic BMW rider crashed at Stirlings on Friday afternoon, injuring his hand and keeping him in hospital until the early hours of this morning.

The five remaining contenders all eased through to Q3 but Lowes took charge of the session right from the start. On his first attempt, the youngster clocked a 1:26.205 which would’ve actually secured him pole position but two laps in the 1:26.0 range, within 0.005s of each other, gave him two tenths in hand over Byrne in second.

Help may also be at hand for Lowes in the form of teammate James Westmoreland who produced a stunning late lap to snatch third while Barry Burrell joined Westmoreland in achieving a season-best grid position, taking fourth for Buildbase BMW.

Michael Laverty will head the second row in fifth ahead of a sure-to-be-concerned Josh Brookes while Tommy Hill’s grip on the BSB crown was loosened even further when he finished the session down in seventh. After his early fall, Karl Harris took a sensational eighth with Peter Hickman and Stuart Easton completing the Q3 line-up.


2012 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship

Final Round: Brands Hatch (Qualifying Result)

Pos Rider Bike Team Time/Gap
1  Alex Lowes  Honda Team WFR 1:26.020
2  Shane Byrne  Kawasaki Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki +0.209
3  James Westmoreland Honda Team WFR +0.265
4  Barry Burrell BMW Buildbase BMW Motorrad +0.356
5  Michael Laverty  Honda Samsung Honda +0.448
6  Josh Brookes  Suzuki Tyco Suzuki +0.532
7  Tommy Hill  Yamaha Swan Yamaha +0.638
8  Karl Harris Kawasaki Quattro Plant Kawasaki +0.642
9  Peter Hickman BMW Buildbase BMW Motorrad +0.714
10  Stuart Easton Kawasaki Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki +1.131
Eliminated In Q2 (P10: 1:26.809)
11  Patric Muff BMW Supersonic Racing Team 1:26.834
12  Michael Rutter Kawasaki MSS Bathams Kawasaki 1:26.862
13  Tommy Bridewell  BMW Supersonic Racing Team 1:26.906
14  Jon Kirkham Honda Samsung Honda 1:27.148
15  Jakub Smrz Aprilia Splitlath Redmond Racing 1:27.259
16  Danny Buchan Kawasaki MSS Bathams Kawasaki 1:27.310
17  Mark Aitchison Aprilia Splitlath Redmond Racing 1:27.322
18  Chris Walker Kawasaki Pr1mo Bournemouth Kawasaki 1:27.426
19  Noriyuki Haga Yamaha Swan Yamaha 1:27.570
20  Luca Scassa Honda Padgetts Racing 1:27.801
Eliminated In Q1 (P20: 1:27.707)
21  Jason O’Halloran Honda Padgetts Racing 1:27.753
22  Robbin Harms Honda Doodson Motorsport 1:27.771
23  Alex Polita Ducati Lloyds British/Ducati Coventry 1:28.106
24  John Laverty Kawasaki Pr1mo Bournemouth Kawasaki 1:28.252
25  Alastair Seeley Suzuki Tyco Suzuki 1:28.259
26  Tristan Palmer Honda GBmoto Racing 1:28.439
27  Luke Quigley Honda GBmoto Racing 1:28.656
28  Tom Tunstall Honda Doodson Motorsport 1:28.954
29  Scott Smart Ducati Moto Rapido Racing 1:28.999
30  Nick Waters Kawasaki Quattro Plant Kawasaki 1:29.326
31  Abdulaziz Binladin Ducati Moto Rapido Racing 1:29.805
32  Jenny Tinmouth Honda Hardinge Honda 1:32.286
 Championship Contender


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