Leon Haslam celebrated his Bennetts British Superbike crown in style with victory in an epic second race at Brands Hatch.
With rain continuing to fall over the Kent circuit, conditions were cold and slippery for the second race of the weekend and having sewn up the championship fight yesterday, Haslam was determined to clinch his first win for Kawasaki on the Brands GP track.
It was a steady start for the JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider who slotted into third place behind Honda’s Jason O’Halloran and rookie Andrew Irwin.
Unsurprisingly, the conditions would claim a number of victims – the first being the Be Wiser Ducati of Andrew Irwin who fell from the fight for the lead at the notorious Graham Hill bend on lap three.
Haslam took the lead for the first time on lap five, but it wouldn’t be simple for the champion with a six-way battle for the lead developing over the mid-point of the race featuring himself, O’Halloran, Tommy Bridewell, Christian Iddon, Jake Dixon and James Ellison.
O’Halloran and Haslam jostled for the lead with Bridewell also in the mix, but fastest man on track James Ellison’s race would end in misery as he highsided out of the exit of paddock hill bend.
Jake Dixon would become the race’s fourth leader on lap 13, only to crash out at Clearways on the same lap.
Determined to take his first win on the Grand Prix circuit since 2007, Haslam successfully pulled the pin in the closing stages with Bridewell getting the better of O’Halloran for second.
Richard Cooper took fourth for Buildbase Suzuki as Christian Iddon faded with is collarbone injury. Showdown contender Peter Hickman rounded out the top six.
Yesterday’s winner Glenn Irwin racing was seventh for Be Wiser Ducati with Brad Ray, Josh Brookes and OMG Suzuki’s Josh Elliott completing the top ten.