More from the MotorSport Vision Racing press release:
Ray leads Bennetts BSB Showdown rivals at Alton Park free practice
Bennetts British Superbike Championship leader Bradley Rae held on to his closest rivals on the opening day of the Showdown at Oulton Park, edging out Tommy Bridewell by 0.291s on his penultimate lap of the day to take the lead in the combined free practice times.
In the second session, it was a duel of the title contenders, with Bridewell initially holding the lead until the final minutes when Ray launched the Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha to the top.
However, Glenn Irwin was increasing his pace and the Honda Racing UK rider moved up to third after his last stint, edging Danny Buchan into fourth who led the Showdown spoilers as four different manufacturers locked down the top four positions.
Jason O’Halloran was the leading McAMS Yamaha in fifth, ahead of Peter Hickman and Kyle Ride, while Taran McKenzie rounded out the top eight as he bids to retain his championship title.
Leon Haslam and Christian Iddan rounded out the top ten, with Tom Sykes and Rory Skinner the last of the drivers automatically through to tomorrow’s Q2 stage of SUPERPICKS qualifying.
It was a difficult opening day for the Cheshire Moldings FS-3 Racing Kawasaki team with both riders crashing during the afternoon session. Lee Jackson flew out at Lodge, ending his day early and he will have to go 1 quarter tomorrow, while Skinner was tipped in the last five minutes at Old Hall.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Oulton Park, SUPERPICKS Combined Free Practice Time:
- Bradley Ray (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha) 1m:33.700s
- Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +0.291s
- Glenn Irvine (Honda Racing UK) +0.392s
- Danny Buchan (SYNETIQ BMW) +0.395s
- Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) +0.506s
- Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) +0.610s
- Kyle Ride (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha) +0.627s
- Taran McKenzie (McAMS Yamaha) +0.688s
- Leon Haslam (VisionTrack Kawasaki) +0.754s
- Christian Iddan (Buildbase Suzuki) +0.756s
- Tom Sykes (MCE Ducati) +0.773s
- Rory Skinner (Cheshire Moldings FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +0.776s
For more information on the Bennetts British Superbike Championship visit www.britishsuperbike.com
RICH Energy OMG Racing Yamaha
Fastest in SUPERPICKS free training
“It was a very positive day. We’ve worked on a few things on the bike, but we’ve really gone back to what we had on the race weekend last time we were here, and we’ve been working our way through that.
“I immediately felt really good on the bike and we were in a good place. We feel good, the bike is working well and I’m looking forward to the three races.
“Qualifying will be important tomorrow and obviously the sprint race, so overall I’m very happy to finish the first day on top.”