Leon Haslam has celebrated his first Bennetts British Superbike Championship title victory, crossing the line at Brands Hatch in sixth place. Glenn Irwin won the race, while Jake Dixon and Tarran Mackenzie completed the podium.
At the start of the race Glenn Irwin launched off the line to lead the pack into Paddock Hill Bend from Dixon and Mackenzie with Peter Hickman and Andrew Irwin in close contention. Superbike rookie Mackenzie had a big moment on the McAMS Yamaha on the third lap and that dropped him down the order.
On the fifth lap Richard Cooper and Tommy Bridewell crashed out unhurt at Druids, the pair had been running inside the top eight, with Jason O’Halloran crashing out a lap later at Graham Hill Bend. Meanwhile at the front Andrew Irwin moved into second place on the seventh lap to put both of the Be Wiser Ducatis ahead of the chasing pack. Dixon wasn’t giving up without a fight though an he stalked the younger Irwin brother before making a decisive move with four laps to go.
Mackenzie then had Andrew Irwin in his sights too and he went for a dive down the inside at Surtees with two laps remaining to fire the McAMS Yamaha back into podium contention. At the front though Glenn Irwin had the edge to hold off Dixon and Mackenzie to the chequered flag as Andrew Irwin equalled his best finish of the season.
Peter Hickman held on to fifth place for Smiths Racing BMW ahead of Haslam who had done enough to become British champion with 2015 title-winner Josh Brookes and James Ellison with Danny Buchan edging out Michael Laverty to complete the top ten.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, Race One result:
Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati)
Jake Dixon (RAF Regular & Reserves Kawasaki) +1.901s
Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) +2.462s
Andrew Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) +3.597s
Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) +5.122s
Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +6.185s
Josh Brookes (McAMS Yamaha) +8.954s
James Ellison (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) +10.808s
Danny Buchan (FS-3 Racing Kawasaki) +15.198s
Michael Laverty (Tyco BMW) +20.702s
Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings after Brands Hatch, Race 1:
Leon Haslam (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 664
Jake Dixon (RAF Regular & Reserves Kawasaki) 613
Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati) 579
Josh Brookes (McAMS Yamaha) 566
Peter Hickman (Smiths Racing BMW) 560
Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki) 538