Featured BSB – double delight for Ray at season opener at Donington

Discussion in 'Racing' started by Simon, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. Simon

    Simon Professional storyteller
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    20-year-old Bradley Ray celebrated his first race win in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship in the opening race of the season at Donington Park today, holding off the last lap challenge from defending champion Shane 'Shakey' Byrne and James Ellison.

    On the opening lap of the race home hero Leon Haslam had initially grabbed the advantage on the JG Speedfit Kawasaki after Byrne had a disastrous start off the line and dropped down the order dramatically.

    Ellison was instantly on the attack and took the lead on the opening lap for the local Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha team with Ray holding third place with Jason O'Halloran and Danny Buchan in close contention.

    Ray was piling the pressure on Haslam though and he made a move on lap three to move into second place and ready to target Ellison. A lap later and Tommy Bridewell and Kyle Ryde had a premature end to their race when they crashed out, but both were soon up on their feet.

    Ray moved to the front of the pack for the first time on the sixth lap with a determined move on Ellison at Redgate with Ellison and Haslam still in close contention, but behind the there was a scrap between Luke Mossey, Dan Linfoot and Danny Buchan with Byrne soon moving into contention.

    Linfoot and Mossey were trading blows on track, but Byrne was soon ahead and with four laps to go the leading trio were inseparable in their quest for the first victory of the season.

    The battle for the win went all the way to the finish line and on the exit of Melbourne for the final time Ray had a moment which pushed him out of the seat, but he wasn’t giving Ellison and Byrne an inch.

    The defending champion though took the advantage, moving ahead of Ellison to finish second as the Buildbase Suzuki team celebrated the first victory of 2018.

    Dan Linfoot won the war for fourth place ahead of Mossey and the returning Glenn Irwin as Jason O'Halloran dropped back to seventh on the final lap. Peter Hickman was eighth after he made a move on Haslam with Michael Laverty completing the top ten.

    Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Donington Park, Race 1:

    1. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki)
    2. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +0.383s
    3. James Ellison (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) +0.721s
    4. Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +3.174s
    5. Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +4.430s
    6. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) +4.671s
    7. Jason O'Halloran (Honda Racing) +6.191s
    8. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +8.822s
    9. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +13.792s
    10. Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +14.224s
    Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Donington Park race one:
    1. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki) 25
    2. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 20
    3. James Ellison (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) 16
    4. Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) 13
    5. Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 11
    6. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) 10
    7. Jason O'Halloran (Honda Racing) 9
    8. Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) 8
    9. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 7
    10. Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) 6

    Bradley Ray delivered a dream start to Buildbase Suzuki’s 2018 Bennetts British Superbike Championship campaign, securing his first victory in yesterday’s (Sunday) opening race and the 20-year old followed it up with a masterful performance in changing conditions in race (Monday).

    The Kent ace got off to a flying start in the drying conditions, leading the race from start to finish, despite initial pressure from Dan Linfoot and defending champion Shane 'Shakey' Byrne. Danny Buchan meanwhile was moving up the order on the FS-3 Racing Kawasaki and he was soon piling on the pressure on the Be Wiser Ducati rider.

    Haslam was determined to make amends for missing out on the podium yesterday and he made his move on Linfoot on the eighth lap, powering ahead and defending hard before edging out an advantage to bridge the gap to the chasing pack and trying to close down Ray. The ‘Pocket Rocket’ had to settle for second, but it was a positive end to his home race weekend for the JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider.

    Meanwhile Buchan continued his charge and despite an attack from Byrne on the final lap, he held fourth position with Christian Iddon moving up the order in the closing stages to finish sixth after an epic battle with Glenn Irwin, Luke Mossey, Jason O'Halloran and Michael Laverty.

    The championship now looks ahead to the second round of the season at Brands Hatch in just under two weeks' time with Ray and Byrne locking out the top two positions in the standings ahead of their home round.

    Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Donington Park, Race two result:
    1. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki)
    2. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +3.450s
    3. Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +11.444s
    4. Danny Buchan (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +19.672s
    5. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +19.903s
    6. Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +30.176s
    7. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) +30.177s
    8. Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +31.108s
    9. Jason O'Halloran (Honda Racing) +31.416s
    10. Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +32.125s
    Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Donington Park:
    1. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki) 50
    2. Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) 31
    3. Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) 29
    4. Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 27
    5. Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 19
    6. Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) 19
     

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