Josh Brookes delivered an imperious performance at Cadwell Park with a double race win to maintain his winning momentum in the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, with just the triple-header at Oulton Park now remaining before the title-deciding Showdown.
The Milwaukee Yamaha rider blitzed the lap record to secure his third pole start of the season and he carried his pace into the two races. In the opening race, the Australian hit the front of the pack ahead of Luke Mossey on the Quattro Plant Kawasaki, but his charge was briefly halted when the Nissan GT-R safety car was deployed after Be Wiser Kawasaki’s Danny Buchan crashed at the Mountain. The 22-year-old was unhurt in the crash but saw his hopes of his best result of the season dashed.
Brookes re-established his advantage when the race resumed, setting the fastest lap of the race as he claimed the victory ahead of Peter Hickman who enjoyed his first podium finish of the season at his home circuit, aboard the RAF Reserves BMW.
Brookes said: “I worked really hard at the start of the first race to make a gap and then I saw the safety car come out and I knew I had to get back on the gas straight away and make the gap again. I always ride better on my own smooth lines and I just wanted to stay ahead.
“The bike feels like an extension of my body at the moment – I am sure it appears easy but it isn’t.”
Billy McConnell powered the Smiths BMW team and himself to their first ever podium in the top class as the reigning Motorpoint British Supersport champion finished third after an incredible last lap move on Tommy Bridewell at the bottom of the Mountain.
Bridewell was pushed all the way by his Tyco BMW team-mate Michael Laverty and Shane Byrne, whose woes continued for a second round as he struggled in sixth place on the PBM Kawasaki.
Brookes provided an action replay next time out, leading the pack while behind him Hickman returned to the podium in second place, with a neat move at Mansfield on the final lap to ease Bridewell back into third ahead of Byrne, Mossey and McConnell.
Brookes said: “I just wanted to get out the front in race two and then not let up and keep going. It is easy to make mistakes and lose concentration. I wanted to be smooth and calculated so I kept it pinned and rode it to the flag.”
He now leads Byrne by 39 points in the overall standings and just four in the all-important podium points score. The leading pair have both already qualified for the final three-round Showdown, but the scrap for the final four places is set to intensify in the decisive triple-header next round at Oulton Park (September 4/5/6).
+ Tune into ITV4 at 8pm on Wednesday for highlights from Cadwell Park.