Josh Brookes and Peter Hickman joined the ranks of 2017 BSB winners, as they became the fifth and sixth different race victors this year. The pair’s success at Thruxton also marked the first wins for the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha and Smiths Racing BMW teams.
Brookes scored his first victory of the season in the opening race, stealing the lead from Hickman in the closing stages in the first high-speed duel of the day.
Pole sitter Jake Dixon had fired himself off the line fastest to lead on the opening lap ahead of Hickman and Brookes as Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne dropped down the order after a mistake at the chicane that caused him to run on.
Two laps later and the BMW Safety Car was deployed when Billy McConnell crashed out, but when the race resumed Dixon was instantly under attack from Hickman. The Lincolnshire ace took the lead on the brakes into the chicane on Lap Nine, pushing Dixon into the clutches of Brookes.
Brookes though was determined and by Lap 15 he was in the lead and with three laps to go he was able to edge out a slight advantage which he held until the chequered flag to give the team their first race victory in the premier class.
Hickman had been embroiled in a battle with Dixon throughout the closing stages but was able to fend off the attack over the final two laps to give the local team a podium finish with Dixon completing the top three.
Byrne had fought his way back into fourth place with Christian Iddon battling to fifth place for Tyco BMW after keeping Jason O’Halloran in his wheel tracks on the leading Honda Fireblade.
Leon Haslam was seventh on the sole JG Speedfit Kawasaki with Bradley Ray equalling his best result of the season in eighth ahead of John Hopkins and Sylvain Guintoli, who featured in the top ten for the first time this year.
In race two Smiths Racing BMW celebrated their debut race win in the Championship as Hickman delivered a hard-fought victory for the local team.
Dixon had again got off to a lightening start onboard the RAF Reserves Kawasaki to lead Hickman and race one winner Brookes on the opening lap with the pack all lining up to try and gain the early advantage.
Byrne was determined to be back in podium contention and he had moved second by the end of lap two as Bradley Ray ended his race prematurely with a crash whilst running inside the top ten.
Byrne had hit the front of the pack, but Dixon fought back strongly with a determined move at the chicane, but a lap later and the defending champion repaid the move in exactly the same place.
Hickman was then ready to get involved in the fight for the lead and on the eighth lap he nudged his way ahead to capture the lead.
Byrne regained the position but Hickman wasn’t giving up and a lap later he was back at the front of the pack as Brookes had launched himself through to second place on the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha.
The Australian was then pushing for the lead, claiming the top spot on lap 14 as Byrne was dropping back dramatically before retiring from the race.
Brookes lead until the penultimate lap when he crashed out unhurt, leaving Hickman to hold the advantage with Dixon in second place at the finish. Meanwhile there was an epic scrap for the final podium position as Iddon, Leon Haslam and O’Halloran battled for the valuable points.
Haslam bided his time and waited until the last lap to make a move on the Tyco BMW rider to score the final podium place ahead of Iddon and O’Halloran with Martin Jessopp scoring an impressive sixth place.
Lee Jackson held off Guintoli for seventh place with James Ellison for McAMS Yamaha and Jakub Smrz for the Lloyd and Jones PR Racing BMW team completing the top ten.
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, Race one result:
1. Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha)
2. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +1.026s
3. Jake Dixon (RAF Reserves Kawasaki) +1.774s
4. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +2.305s
5. Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +5.604s
6. Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +6.797s
7. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +6.926s
8. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki) +12.419s
9. John Hopkins (Moto Rapido Ducati) +12.425s
10.Sylvain Guintoli (Bennetts Suzuki) +12.994s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, Race two result:
1. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW)
2. Jake Dixon (RAF Reserves Kawasaki) +0.6044s
3. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +11.227s
4. Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +11.467s
5. Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +14.971s
6. Martin Jessopp (Ridersmotorcycles BMW) +18.505s
7. Lee Jackson (Smiths Racing BMW) +18.600s
8. Sylvain Guintoli (Bennetts Suzuki) +19.199s
9. James Ellison (McAMS Yamaha) +19.512s
10.Jakub Smrz (Lloyd and Jones PR Racing BMW) +19.725s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings after Thruxton:
1. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 203
2. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 184
3. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) 164
4. Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 161
5. Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) 154
6. Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) 154
KMR Kawasaki will have a four-man team for this year’s Lightweight TT race with Peter Hickman and Danny Webb joining Lee Johnston and Hudson Kennaugh in Ryan Farquhar’s team.
The quartet will all ride identically-prepared ER6 650cc Kawasaki’s in the four-lap race as triple TT winner Farquhar goes all out to claim victory in the race he won himself back in 2012.
Hickman will be making his debut in the race having withdrawn last year after being scheduled to ride the John Burrows BEE Cookstown Kawasaki and will be among the pre-race favourites, as will team-mate Johnston. He previously rode for Farquhar’s team at the 2015 Isle of Man TT and, after lapping at close to 119mph, was lying in a podium position before retiring on the final lap.
Webb will be making his fourth successive appearance in the race – all of which have been for Farquhar’s team. His debut in 2014 saw him finish in a credible 14th place and he went quicker still in 2015, lapping in excess of 115mph on his way to claiming an excellent tenth place and his first silver replica.
South African Kennaugh competed in the Lightweight TT race in 2015 where he was running on the edge of the top ten before a spill at Braddan Bridge in the closing stages ended his race.
With Johnston and Hickman expected to be challenging for the race win and Webb and Kennaugh strong candidates for top ten positions, it promises to be an exciting race for KMR Kawasaki and while Farquhar is naturally disappointed not to be riding himself, he’s excited about his team’s prospects.
Gloucester-based Smiths Racing BMW has signed 29-year-old Peter Hickman for the 2017 roads and BSB season.
Lincolnshire lad Hickman will be riding alongside fellow Yellowbelly Lee Jackson, who will also be racing a Smiths Racing BMW S1000RR in BSB.
Hickman said: “I have another new challenge to look forward to again this season and I’m relishing it aboard the Smiths Racing BMW. All the dealings I’ve had with the team so far have been fantastic and they are very easy to work with. I know the BMW well having ridden it in the past and we’ve been promised the right support from the factory in Germany, which will make a difference. I’m pleased to be bringing my own crew into the team which is a massive bonus so I’m really looking forward to the season in both BSB and on the roads with Smiths Racing.”
Hickman made his TT debut in 2014 for the Ice Valley BMW team, taking a best finish of eighth in the Superstock race while he also won silver replicas for 11th place in the Senior and 14th Superbike races, which were enough to land him the prestigious Newcomers Trophy – his fastest lap of 129.104mph remains the fastest ever lap recorded by a Mountain Course newcomer.
Continuing with BMW machinery in 2015, this time for Lee Hardy Racing, Hickman took fifth in the Superstock race, seventh in the Senior and eighth in the Superbike races to win three more silver replicas, improving his best lap to 131.626mph in the process.
A switch to the GBMoto Kawasaki team in 2016 saw him take an excellent fourth place in the Superbike race where he lapped at 132.465mph to become the fourth fastest rider of all time.
He also won two MCE BSB races last season on his way to winning the Rider’s Cup title as well as taking victory at the Ulster Grand Prix and defending his Macau Grand Prix title. Very much in demand as one of the sport’s great all-rounders, Peter returns to the BMW marque with which he’s enjoyed so much success in the past.
Macau is one of the highlights in the international road racing season – and this year’s race saw an intense three-way battle at the front of the field, a battle of three BMW racers.
The protagonists were last year’s winner Peter Hickman, his Bathams team-mate Michael Rutter and Martin Jessopp on the RidersMotorcycles.com BMW.
This trio secured a great 1-2-3 result for the S1000RR in Macau last year, and they dominated the race again this year. Hickman, Macau record winner Rutter and pole setter Jessopp were involved in an intense fight for the lead, changing positions several times and soon building a huge gap to the rest of the field. After 12 thrilling and dramatic laps on the Guia Circuit, Hickman crossed the finish line as the winner, just 0.533 seconds in front of second placed Rutter with third-placed Jessopp just 0.122 seconds behind Rutter and 0.655 seconds behind Hickman. The dominance of this trio was further proven by the fact that they had an advantage of 20 seconds over the rest of the field.
Race winner Hickman said: “I hadn’t seen the bike until practice on Thursday and with not having ridden a BMW since this time last year I was on a steep learning curve so to get the job done for the second year in a row is a brilliant feeling.”
BSB saw history made today at Oulton Park as Leon Haslam, James Ellison and Peter Hickman climbed the rostrum in the opening race to claim the first-ever podium lockout for the Kawasaki factory team.
It was a flying start for the three JG Speedfit Kawasaki riders, with Haslam and Ellinson finishing first and second in the opening practice with Hickman only 0.6s behind in tenth. Continuing that form throughout the remaining practice sessions, the trio came into qualifying with Haslam second on combined times, Ellinson ninth and Hickman13th.
With this weekend seeing three races around the Oulton Park circuit, qualifying was held early on Saturday and all three riders were able to progress through the three sessions – the first time this season the entire JG Speedfit team made it to Q3. After an intense eight minute session, Haslam secured third on the grid for the opening race, Ellisnon sixth and Hickman just behind in seventh. Continuing the incredible pace shown this weekend, all three were under the existing lap record.
Race One saw all three riders running at the sharp end of the pack with Ellinson crossing the line at the end of the opening lap in the lead. Running third for the majority of the opening half of the race, Haslam picked off title rival Shane Byrne on the Ducati on lap seven before moving into the lead on lap nine. With Hickman picking his way through the pack to run fourth, a mistake from Byrne saw him run off track and Hickman snatched the final podium position. Holding positions to the flag, the trio made MCE British Superbike history by becoming the first ever team to claim all three spots on the podium.
Taking his fifth win of the season, Haslam said: “A 1-2-3 for the team is just incredible and to take another win and the fastest lap in the process just doesn’t get any better! We’ve made big steps with the bike and are beginning to understand it more and getting the true potential out of the ZX-10R. There’s still a lot more we can unlock but right now it’s doing the job, and we know we can win, so that’s our main focus.
“To see that my team-mates are second and third is brilliant. The team has put in so much effort over the last few months so to get the first ever BSB podium lockout is perfect way to repay them.”
Making a welcome return to the podium, second-placed rider Ellison said: “We’ve been doing a lot of work on the bike and the team has made some big steps. We had a test at Cadwell earlier this week and found a really good setting with the bike which has paid off here. The boys have done a fantastic job to give me I bike that I can race and fight for a win with which is mega. It’s not been an easy few rounds recently but we’ve shown we can fight for wins and our title challenge is back on track.”
Third-placed finisher Hickman said: “What an incredible race and it’s an amazing feeling to be part of the JG Speedfit Kawasaki 1-2-3, the first in BSB history! It has been a brilliant weekend so far, the bike has been working fantastic and I knew our race pace was strong – particularly towards the end of the race. I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s races and hopefully we can get our space in the Showdown.”
Michael Laverty and Peter Hickman shared the opening two race wins of the 2016 British Superbike Championship in an intense season-opener at Silverstone.
The opening race of the season got Laverty’s season off to a flying start as he held off Shakey Byrne by 0.550s at the finish line to win for Tyco BMW in a top ten which featured all six of the manufactures represented in the 2016 championship.
Honda’s Jason O’Halloran had initially grabbed the lead as the pack streamed into Copse for the first time, but pole-sitter Leon Haslam was instantly on the attack and he forced his JG Speedfit Kawasaki ahead on his return to the series. His lead was short lived though as Laverty stormed to the front and then held the pace but the ‘Pocket Rocket’ was later forced to retire with a technical problem.
Laverty was able to fend off the challenges of Ducati mounted Byrne in the closing stages to claim the first victory of 2016, with a resurgent Christian Iddon on the second Tyco BMW claimed his first ever podium finish in MCE BSB.
A dramatic race two saw the fight for victory go down to the wire as Kawasaki’s Peter Hickman and Ducati’s Byrne went head-to-head on the final lap in an incredible tussle for the final race win of the day.
Hickman had launched off the line to lead the field on the opening lap from race one winner Michael Laverty, Dan Linfoot, Jason O’Halloran, Danny Buchan and Byrne, but the four-time champion was instantly on the attack and was up to fourth by the third lap.
At the front Laverty had hit the lead on the Tyco BMW, but Hickman wasn’t going to give an inch in his quest for victory and on the sixth lap he launched his attack; making a move to return to the front of the pack.
A lap later though and Laverty appeared to have an issue; he dropped down the order leaving Hickman and Byrne to fight it out for the lead. The pair were inseparable down the Wellington Straight for the final time and at Brooklands Byrne went for a move; a small window of opportunity gave him the chance to push ahead, but Hickman was instantly fighting back to recapture the lead.
A corner later at Luffield, Byrne looked like he had the edge but as the pair exited for the drag to the line the Be Wiser Ducati dramatically drifted sideways as Hickman powered to the finish to claim the victory. The incredible chase saw the pair separated by just 0.099s at the line.
In the battle for third place Iddon had got ahead of O’Halloran as the Honda Racing rider was forced to settle for fourth place. The Australian had been embroiled in a titanic battle with returning Haslam and the pair were switching places all the way to the finish.
Speaking after his victory, Race One winner Michael Laverty said: “It is difficult to just run out front and look at your lap timer. I only looked at my pitboard once as I just wanted to concentrate on being as smooth as I could and not making any mistakes and the toughest thing was mid-race as my hands went a bit numb –perhaps as it was a bit cold out there!
QI didn’t feel as comfortable as I wanted to be and I was losing time in a few areas and then I pushed on and it was enough to bring it home. We have worked hard over the winter so it was a perfect start for me and the team so thanks to everyone at Tyco BMW.”
Race Two winner Peter Hickman said: “It feels like a big relief to have won the second race today. I was disappointed that we didn’t finish the first race with a technical issue and I was surprised at how fast I could be from the start of the race. The weekend started steady and we built up throughout the three days. I got a really good start and tried to get my head down and not make any mistakes. When Michael came through I thought I would follow him for a few laps, and then he had a bit of a problem so I got in front of him.
“Over the last few laps the Ducati is so loud that I knew it was Shakey behind me. I did run a bit deep into Brooklands which gave him a bit of a shot at it and then that made me too tight into Luffield, so he snuck underneath. There was no way that I was doing all that work and not winning though. I just pinned it and pretty much closed my eyes and it was enough to take it.”
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Silverstone, race one result:
- Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW)
- Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +0.550s
- Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +1.394s
- Luke Mossey (Quattro Plant Teccare Kawasaki) +1.560s
- Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +4.155s
- Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +4.281s
- Danny Buchan (Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati) +6.354s
- Lee Jackson (Buildbase BMW) +7.681s
- John Hopkins (ePayMe Yamaha) +8.598s
- Tommy Bridewell (Bennetts Suzuki) +8.739s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Silverstone, race two result:
- Peter Hickman (JG Speedfit Kawasaki)
- Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +0.009s
- Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +1.005s
- Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) +1.395s
- Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +3.142s
- Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +3.369s
- Lee Jackson (Buildbase BMW) +5.685s
- James Ellison (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +7.554s
- Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +7.679s
- Luke Mossey (Quattro Plant Teccare Kawasaki) +8.045s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings after Silverstone:
- Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 40
- Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) 35
- Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) 32
- Peter Hickman (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 25
- Jason O’Halloran (Honda Racing) 23
- Luke Mossey (Quattro Plant Teccare Kawasaki) 19
Lincolnshire’s Peter Hickman took a brilliant podium in the Dundrod 150 Superbike race, bringing the Briggs Equipment Superstock BMW home in a superb third place after a thrilling battle with factory Honda rider Conor Cummins.
The Dundrod 150 Superbike race, a pre-cursor for Saturday’s Ulster Grand Prix, saw the 28-year old complete the first lap around the high-speed 7.4-mile circuit in fifth place and although he was overhauled by Cummins on lap three, he moved up to fourth on that same lap as both Ian Hutchinson and Lee Johnston retired.
For the remainder of the race, Hicky and Cummins were nose to tail and on his fourth lap, he posted a new personal best lap around Dundrod at 132.413mph. Making just his second appearance at the event, this was comfortably inside the Superstock class lap record, and going into the final lap, there was still less than a second between the duo.
With Guy Martin and Bruce Anstey ahead on the road, third place and the final podium spot was up for grabs but race leader Martin crashed out at Ireland’s bringing the race to a premature end. The Tyco BMW rider escaped serious injury but with the result going back to the end of the fifth lap, it meant Peter was awarded third place with Anstey in first and Cummins in second.
Peter Hickman said: “What a mega race, I’m really, really happy. I made a good start to the race and although I was fourth into the first turn, I went round the outside of a couple of people to move up to second. I got pushed back a bit and had a small issue with the tyre spinning on the rim but it didn’t slow me down much and I just got stuck in. It’s only my second time here so I’m still very much learning the circuit and when Conor came by, I opted to sit behind him.”
“We were running at a similar pace but he was faster than me in a couple of places so I was able to learn from him and pick up some good pointers. Obviously the red flags came out on the final lap so we were awarded third but firstly I hope Guy’s ok and will be back on the grid on Saturday. I’m delighted with the podium though and especially with my lap of 132.4mph, which is faster than the Superstock lap record! The bike is absolutely mint so a massive thanks to all the team and sponsors and I’m really looking forward to the Ulster GP races now on Saturday.”
Peter will be back in action on the Briggs Equipment BMW on Saturday in the Ulster GP Superbike and Superstock races. Despite problems in practice, he also hopes to be out on the Trooper MV Agusta in the two Supersport encounters.
Peter Hickman is targeting the Isle of Man TT races to return to action after withdrawing from the North West 200 as a result of his injuries sustained in a crash at Oulton Park on Saturday.
Having sustained two broken ribs in the 150mph spill on the approach to Druids, the 27-year old has subsequently been diagnosed with two breaks of the C4 vertebrae in his neck meaning he will be unable to participate in the first International road race of the season, which gets underway on Tuesday, May 12.
The Louth-based rider enjoyed an excellent debut at the event 12 months ago, comfortably being the best performing newcomer and also recording the fastest ever lap by a circuit debutante. However, the nature of his injuries mean it simply isn’t possible to ride and the aim now is to be fully fit for the TT.
Briggs Equipment BMW team owner Lee Hardy said: “His injuries from the crash on Saturday are a little bit worse than we first thought, so the goal now is to support Peter as best as we can and ensure he gets the best possible medical support with the aim of being ready for the TT. He needs to get as much rest and recuperation as he can and the final decision will ultimately lie with his surgeon but we’re very hopeful of being ready for practice week at the Isle of Man. I’d also like to publicly thank the on-site medical team at Oulton Park for all their excellent treatment and support given to Peter after his accident.”
Hickman enjoyed a sensational debut at the TT in 2014, finishing as the fastest ever newcomer in the event’s history beating Josh Brookes outright fastest lap by a newcomer with 129.104 in the last lap of the 2014 PokerStars Senior TT which saw him finish in 11th place.
Peter Hickman will ride for the RAF Reserves Team for this season after extending his stay with the BSB outfit.
Louth-based Hickman claimed his and the team’s maiden win Superbike last year at a wet Cadwell Park on board the venerable Honda CBR1000RR, but this year the team switches to BMW power and will campaign a S1000RR.
Hickman, 27, who also made his debut on the roads last year, smashing the newcomer’s lap record in the process, said: “I’m really pleased to be staying with the team and have a bit of consistency in my racing, which is something I haven’t really had so far. I’m made up to be riding the BMW and am looking forward to making the most of that extra bit of power. I’m feeling really positive about the coming season and can’t wait for the season to get started. I want to be running closer to the front. I had my first win at Cadwell Park last year so I want to be pushing for podiums again.”