Oulton BSB: Buchan leads final practice

British superbikes

Image: Impact Images

Danny Buchan dominated the final free practice session of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Oulton Park on Saturday morning, with the Synetiq BMW rider the only rider to dive within 1’33 around the 2.69-mile circuit.

Bright sunny conditions again greeted the field and it was Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing) who took the lead with a lap of 1:35.268, putting him ahead of Leon Haslam (VisionTrack Kawasaki), Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Ducati Products) and Rory. Skinner (Cheshire Moldings FS-3 Kawasaki).

Irwin was the first rider to go under 1’35, quickly followed by Bridewell and ten minutes into the 20-minute session they continued to lead the way with Kyle Ryde (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha) now third ahead of the Irwin’s teammate. Takumi Takahashi, Lee Jackson and Haslam.

Bridewell then upped the pace to 1’34.209s which put him ahead 0.268s behind Irwin and while the top four remained the same, Title Fighters Skinner and Friday’s pacemaker Bradley Ray were now running fifth and sixth respectively. Championship hopeful Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) was also on the move, dropping from 18th to 9th.

The Australian then moved on faster to finish fifth as Buchan moved up to the top of the standings with a lap of 1:34.118s. That gave him a slim 0.091 advantage over Bridewell, but the next time he went even faster and a 1’33.927 confirmed his place at the front of the pack.

Bridewell and Irwin held on to second and third with a late lap from Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) propelling him to fourth ahead of O’Halloran and Ryde.

Tom Sykes, who spent the first half of the session in the garage, finished seventh on the Ducati MCE with Takahashi, Skinner and Ray rounding out the top ten. Defending champion Tarran Mackenzie on the second McAMS machine, finished 16th after completing just six laps.

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