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Huge crowd set for MCE BSB at Oulton Park this weekend

Monday, April 28 2014

Britain's leading motor racing series returns to Cheshire's Oulton Park this Bank Holiday weekend (3-5 May), as the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship makes its first of two visits this year to the legendary racetrack near Tarporley. A huge crowd is expected to watch 31 of the world's best riders go head-to-head, with two MCE BSB races scheduled for Monday.

The championship has seen an unprecedented number of team and rider changes over the winter months, which has shaken up the grid. The most successful rider in MCE BSB history is Shane Byrne, and he remains title favourite after taking two wins last time out at Brands Hatch. However it's all change behind him, as two-time runner up Josh Brookes has switched from Suzuki machinery to Milwaukee Yamaha, partnering upcoming Brit Tommy Bridewell. Superstar and former MotoGP frontrunner John Hopkins from California is back in MCE BSB and aiming for the title, whilst World Superbike podium finisher Jakub Smrz appears a force to be reckoned with on the Ducati Panigale.

One of the highlights of the Brands Hatch opener two weeks' ago was the form of category veteran Chris Walker. The 42-year-old looked transformed on the Lloyds British GBmoto Kawasaki, and he nearly won the first race, just missing out to Byrne. He's third in the point standings behind his team-mate James Ellison. Another rider to watch is 3-time MCE BSB champion and Oulton Park specialist Ryuichi Kiyonari, who finally looks back to his best with Buildbase BMW after a torrid time of late with Honda.

Meanwhile Ellesmere Port's Jenny Tinmouth is determined to claim her first points of the season at her home round, whilst Liverpool-based PR Kawasaki are eager to have a strong performance at their local circuit with Keith Farmer. And Isle of Man TT legend Michael Dunlop will make a one-off guest appearance with Buildbase BMW this weekend.

Shane Byrne led the way in MCE BSB testing at Oulton Park last Friday (25th) and commented afterwards: "We want to go to Oulton Park and have a load of fun after the winning start we had at Brands Hatch. I think the pressure could be more on the Yamaha riders as that bike has historically gone well there. Ultimately we will work hard in the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki team to be strong because two wins at Brands Hatch were great but we are fully concentrated on adding to that that!"

Chris Walker said: "I really enjoy Oulton Park and it is one of the best circuits in the country. We have had some time on circuit testing ready for the event and we have been working hard on the settings as we desperately want to be up there fighting at the front in the races. It was nice to be in the fight at the front at Brands Hatch; I wasn't short of confidence or bravery despite being one of the older guard! It has been a confidence-inspiring start to the season but I do know the hard work is still to come."

In addition to the two headlining MCE BSB races on Bank Holiday Monday there will be seven support races during the event including the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship, plus the closely-contested Pirelli National Superstock 1000 series and the Motul Motostar Championship.

Parking at the venue is free of charge, plus there's a free pit walk and autograph session for fans, a trade village and plenty of off-track fun for all the family to enjoy.

The second round of the MCE British Superbike Championship takes place this May Bank Holiday weekend (3/4/5 May). Tickets can also be purchased on the gate for £10 on Saturday (practice), £14 on Sunday (Qualifying) and £32 for Sunday (main raceday). Children under 13 are admitted free on all days. For further information spectators should click here or call the ticket office on 0843 453 9000.