Josh Brookes resisted a race-long challenge from Shane Byrne to win his first race of the 2014 British Superbike Championship at Oulton Park. Brookes was narrowly beaten by Byrne in the day’s first race but the Australian exacted a measure of revenge in a tense race two.
After chasing down Byrne only to fall agonisingly short in the earlier, Brookes was intent on leading this race from the front and made the ideal start by beating the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki into Old Hall on lap one. Next time around, Byrne sought to change that with a move at Island bend but a sensational pass around the outside of Britten’s gave Brookes the lead again, enabling him to settle into a rhythm at the front.
The leading pair were setting a ferocious pace and it eventually proved too much for third placed James Ellison who lost touch in the final third of the race but Byrne wasn’t going to shifted from the tail of the Milwaukee Yamaha. On the last lap, Byrne tried everything to force an opening and it looked as though he’d found one when Josh ran slightly wide at Hislop’s but the Australian recovered just in time to keep his rival at bay, taking victory in the end by a tenth of a second.
For the fourth race out of four, Ellison walked away with third place while Stuart Easton turned the tables on Tommy Bridewell to take fourth after being beaten to that position in the first race. James Westmoreland salvaged sixth for Buildbase BMW after mechanical problems ruled out Ryuichi Kiyonari for the second time this afternoon while Dan Linfoot overhauled a fading Chris Walker for seventh.