Anvil TAG Yamaha’s Josh Brookes bagged his first MCE British Superbike race win of the year with an intelligent ride on his R1 in Thruxton.'s first race.
He crossed the finishing line with a one second advantage over Smiths Racing’s Peter Hickman and RAF Reserves Kawasaki’ man Jake Dixon.
At first it was Dixon who got the hole-shot ahead of Hickman and Brookes. Be Wiser Ducati’s Shane Byrne was challenging the top three then went wide at Club and re-joined in fifth.
The safety car then went out on lap two as Billy McConnell’s FS-3 Racing Kawasaki caught on fire and came to a halt on the grassy verge. The likeable Aussie was taken to the medical centre for further assessment.
After five laps the safety car went back in and Dixon dashed ahead. The RAF Reserves rider opted for the harder SC2 front and softer SC0 rear Pirelli tyres. With the BMW safety car out of the way Byrne moved into fourth after overtaking Iddon.
On lap nine of 18, a four-way scrap emerged for the win between Dixon, Hickman, Brookes and Byrne. Hickman decided to ride with the SC2 front and SC0 Pirellis and made a move on Dixon at Club to lead the race.
Brookes was then eyeing up Dixon as his next target, with the usual softer tyre compounds on his R1, and with seven laps remaining on the Hampshire track was edging ever closer to the Dover lad.
On lap 14, Brookes overtook Dixon at Brooklands and then a lap later got the better of Hickman to make his way right to the front of the duelling pack. Dixon was also not going to be defeated and at Club made up a place.
Then a lap later at the chicane Hickman pushed back into second. With the two bikes battling it out on track it paved the way for Brookes to plough on ahead, and had a one second advantage going into the final lap.
Thruxton was the first track that Brookes won a BSB race, and it is his sixth win at the circuit and first for Yamaha this year. At the flag Byrne held on to fourth with Iddon, O’Halloran, Haslam, Hopkins, Ray and Guintoli completing the top ten.
Jessopp, Smrz, Mackenzie, Jackson and Linfoot were the last of the points finishers. Honda Racing’s Dan Linfoot Fireblade had an issue when the safety car went out and then had to fight through the field to make his way back into the points.