Hopkins upsets Showdown rivals with Oulton pace

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John Hopkins has topped the opening day of MCE British Superbike action at Oulton Park today, holding off the momentum of six-in-a-row winner Josh Brookes by only 0.054 as both of them dipped close to lap record pace.

“I had no idea of my time as I did not have the GPS switched on and during that lap I made a few little mistakes so I thought it was slower than that! We had run with used tyres earlier as we worked on the bike, then put in a new one for the afternoon, and that with the adjustments to the suspension made a big change to my lap times.

“The bike feels great, the boys in the team have worked very hard and I am great and up for the three races. I had my first win here back in 2011 so this is a pretty special track for me and I want to be fighting for the podium.”

However, defending champion Shane Byrne was a close third to the duo, taking the ideal fastest lap when his sectors were combined to get his season back underway after a mid-season slump that has allowed Brookes the title lead.

Race action is set to get underway tomorrow at the Cheshire track, with the first race of the triple-header weekend scheduled for after tomorrow morning’s qualifying.

Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer