HM Plant Honda rider Shane Byrne won the seond BSB race of the weekend in damp conditions at Brands Hatch this afternoon.
Byrne was gifted the lead when race leader Michael Laverty crashed at Druids on lap two, from there Byrne pulled away from the following riders. Laverty rode his bike to the pits, and rejoined on lap 10 in an attempt to post a fast lap for a grid position in race three.
Championship leader John Hopkins suffered a technical problem on the opening lap, but was able to get his Suzuki GSX-R1000 started again and rejoined the race last. Hopkinsmade his way through the field, to eventually finish in 12th and keep his championship lead by two points going into the final race of the season.
Swan Yamaha's Tommy Hill got caught up in a battle with Hopkins' team-mate early on in the race, with the pair touching several times. Kirkham pulled away from Hill and closed the gap to leader Byrne.
Hill looked comfortable in third place, but towards the end of the race was unable to hold off SMT Honda rider James Ellison, who passed Hill going into the final lap.
Hopkins and Hill are now the only riders who can win the championship, after Josh Brookes also crashed at Paddock Hill on lap three. The Australian ran a little wide and hit a damp patch.
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, race two result:
Shane Byrne (HM Plant Honda)
Jon Kirkham (Samsung Crescent Racing Suzuki) +1.150s
James Ellison (Sorrymate.com Honda) +11.994s
Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) +12.825s
Chris Walker (Pr1mo Racing Kawasaki) +23.993s
Graeme Gowland (WFR Honda) +27.829s
Tommy Bridewell (Motorpoint Yamaha) +29.403s
James Westmoreland (WFR Honda) +40.713s
Dan Linfoot (Tyco Honda) +46.981s
Karl Harris (Splitlath Aprilia) +49.918s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings ahead of the final race:
John Hopkins (Samsung Crescent Racing Suzuki) 629
Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) 627
Shane Byrne (HM Plant Honda) 600
Michael Laverty (Swan Yamaha) 590
Josh Brookes (Relentless Suzuki by TAS) 588
Ryuichi Kiyonari (HM Plant Honda) 521