|Yamaha’s campaign to take the 2013 MCE British Superbike Championship and Motorpoint Supersport Championship titles began in style yesterday at Brands Hatch with race wins in both classes. Milwaukee Yamaha Team rider James Ellison celebrated his return to BSB in style, starting from pole position in race two, the British rider was only temporarily checked by rival Shane Byrne before recovering the lead on lap two and holding it to the line for his first race win of the year aboard the YZF-R1. Ellison was clearly working well with the R1, delivering the fastest lap of the race in both race one and two. A small mistake in race one resulting in no points puts Ellison into fourth place in the Championship with 25 points as they head for round two at the Thruxton Circuit next weekend. Ellison’s teammate Josh Waters made an encouraging start to his first ever British Superbike season, the double Australian Superbike Champion taking tenth in the first race as he got to grips with the Brands Hatch Indy circuit.
In the Supersport class it was Mar-Train Yamaha’s new signing Stuart Easton making the title challenge clear, The YZF-R6 rider taking the chequered flag in the first race, just 0.255 seconds ahead of closest rival Billy McConnell. Easton’s teammate Glenn Irwin was only six seconds behind him over the line in seventh place. The win from Easton places him fourth in the standings ahead of Thruxton in a week’s time, despite a DNF in yesterday’s second Supersport race.
“It was great to bounce back in the second one from the schoolboy error in the first race as it was really disappointing. I had a bit of a moment at Graham Hill Bend and I thought that was going to be enough for Shakey to try and make a move but we were lucky and held onto it. I really enjoyed being out the front with the other guys and full credit to the Milwaukee Yamaha team as we have had an impressive start to the season.”
“I expected Ben Wilson to be aggressive but I got past him though was always expecting him to lunge through at me, then I heard a Triumph up behind me. I was doing my best to stay consistent and it is so good to win first time back.”