Monday, September 29, 2008

BSB Silverstone: Shakey is Champion

Shane Byrne finally secured his second British Superbike title at Silverstone, while Leon Camier and Leon Haslam took the victories in a day of crashing on the flat, featureless track.

Race 1
Cal Crutchlow started from pole position, but it was his HM Plant Honda team-mate Leon Haslam who blasted off the grid and into the lead. Crutchlow slotted into second place in front of Rizla Suzuki rider Tom Sykes, while James Ellison came from nowhere to take fourth on his Bike Animal Honda, ahead of NW200's Michael Rutter in fifth.

Karl Harris was running well until he flew off the track across the grass, luckily finding some tarmac used by the F1 cars. He had already had a hair-raising moment as he launched past Ellison at the hairpin, hanging Rutter out to dry at the same time. Harris rejoined, but was a long way down the pack. In all the confusion, Michael Laverty took his Relentless Suzuki into fourth spot.

There was soon carnage at the idiotic chicane which leads into the final corner. This slow, slow left/right flick has no place on a major bike racing track, and this would become painfully obvious as Haslam turned left, only to be torpedoed by Tom Sykes. Haslam limped over to his bike, motioned to the marshals to pick it up, and rejoined the race. Tom Sykes also rejoined, but was delayed as he bump started his Suzuki. This collision was eerily reminiscent of the pair's crash at Oulton Park earlier this year, when Haslam was excluded from the race results for a kamikaze attack on Sykes. This time, with the roles reversed, Sykes was excluded from the results and suffered a swingeing 12 place penalty on the grid for race 2...

Read the rest of my British Superbike Silverstone race review at Motorbikesport.

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