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Brookes scores Cadwell Park pole with title rival Shakey back in eleventh

Saturday, August 22 2015

Josh Brookes will start from the pole position for tomorrow's opening race at Cadwell Park as the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship leader lapped under the existing circuit record to hold off rookie Danny Buchan.

It was another dramatic session as John Hopkins crashed out at Charlies in Q1 and despite narrowly making it through to Q2 in 18th place, the Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati was too badly damaged to make it back out on to the track for the second stage of qualifying.

The second qualifying session also saw some of the leading contenders miss out on the cut for the final top ten shootout for the pole position as Christian Iddon slid off at Park. The Bennetts Suzuki rider had a race against time to return to the track but it wasn't enough and he will start from 16th on the grid for the opening race tomorrow.

The tough weekend continued for the PBM Kawasaki team too, with Shane 'Shakey' Byrne dropping outside the top ten into 11th place in the final seconds of the Q2 session, despite improving his pace to set his best lap of the weekend so far.

The battle for the pole position then came down to an intense battle between Brookes and Buchan. The Be Wiser Kawasaki rider topped both the Q1 and Q2 sessions before getting edged out by his Milwaukee Yamaha rival in the final stage marking his best qualifying result of the season so far.

There was an incredible battle for the final place on the front row of the grid too between Tommy Bridewell and Luke Mossey. The Tyco BMW rider initially had the edge, only for Mossey to claim the position a few seconds later as the final minutes ticked down. Bridewell wasn't finished though and his last lap fired him back onto the front row ahead of the Quattro Plant Kawasaki rider.

Peter Hickman was back inside the top five at his home round for the RAF Reserves BMW team, narrowly pushing ahead of Billy McConnell and the second Tyco BMW of Michael Laverty and James Westmoreland. Martin Jessopp and Jack Kennedy also made the final cut into Q3 to celebrate their strongest qualifying performances of the season.

Brookes said: "All weekend I have been fast, but I had a little slip off in the session this morning - I think we were chasing a unicorn! We were trying to improve the bike when it was already really good and where we gained a little bit, we lost a bit in another area and I slipped off and my confidence was a little knocked. It doesn't matter how well you are going, even if you have a little crash it does do that so Q1 & Q2 I took it steady and was building up to give it everything in Q3. We have worked hard for it today." 

MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Cadwell Park, Datatag Qualifying:

  1. Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) 1m:26.433s
  2. Danny Buchan (Be Wiser Kawasaki) +0.459s
  3. Tommy Bridewell (Tyco BMW) +0.577s
  4. Luke Mossey (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +0.581s
  5. Peter Hickman (RAF Reserves BMW) +0.778s
  6. Billy McConnell (Smiths Racing BMW) +0.944s
  7. Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +0.947s
  8. James Westmoreland (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +0.960s
  9. Martin Jessopp (RidersMotorcycles.com BMW) +0.987s
  10. Jack Kennedy (Team WD-40 Kawasaki) +1.360s