It was great to see such a strong turnout of fans at round three of this year’s British Superbike Championship, at the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit.
Those attending witnessed some top, top calibre racing plus watched up close the feats achieved by renowned, world class International road racers competing.
Whilst top five finishes didn’t arise, Honda Racing’s Glenn Irwin looked in much better form on route to respective 11th, 8th, 6th place finishes.
Gradually nearing the pace needed to contend with the factory supported Ducati, Yamaha, BMW racers, it’s looking more of a positive situation for the four times North West 200 winner, who looked confidence, fitness shot at Knockhill.
For Mountain Course lap record holder Peter Hickman, his most recent Brands Hatch GP racing venture provided a mixed bag in terms of results.
A non-finisher from the opening Superbike encounter, the following 1000cc races saw the five times TT victor battle his way to 9th, 7th place finishes.
Presently eighth in the current Championship standings, it’s fair to say FHO Racing’s Hickman could be more than a few places higher if he had better luck.
FHO Racing team mate Brian McCormack took a brace of respectable top 21 finishes whilst Dean Harrison/Silicone Engineering Racing’s return to BSB action yielded solid results including a run to 14th within the third, final Superbike race held in mixed conditions.
Fellow elite International roads exponents Lee Johnston, Ian Hutchinson took between them three top 15 finishes from the Supersport, Superstock 1000 races.
Next generation roads talents Jim Hind, Joe Loughlin acquired points finishes, the all conquering Birchall brothers Ben & Tom dominated the Molson Group British Sidecar Championship races.
For many though, the standout performance by a real roads competitor over the meeting was by 23 times TT winner John McGuinness MBE.
Sixth within the opening Ducati TriOptions Cup race stint, the second Ducati contest saw McGuinness MBE turn back the clock, producing a fantastic performance to take second just 0.770 behind Chris Walker.
You could sense how much the result meant to the Morecambe TT great, who looks set to retain his link with Pete Extance’s Bournemouth Kawasaki team for TT 2022.
Attentions now for the likes of Hickman, Irwin, Harrison, Johnston turns toward this weekend’s Oulton Park BSB round which clashes with the Irish road race season opener for 2021, the Armoy Road Races.
Words by Stevie Rial #dontletfearcontrolyou