Farmer extends lead in British Supersport Championship

Keith Farmer extended his lead in the Dickies British Supersport Championship on Sunday after finishing as the runner-up in a pulsating Feature race at Brands Hatch.

Sunday, 23rd July 2017, 9:35 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th September 2017, 11:38 am
Keith Farmer on the Appleyard Macadam Yamaha at Brands Hatch.

Farmer, who pocketed 25 points for his win in the Sprint race on Saturday, was only 0.084 seconds behind Jack Kennedy at the finish as the pair battled it out around the Indy circuit in Kent.

Luke Stapleford, who was the 2015 British Supersport champion, was the first rider over the line on the Profile Triumph ahead of Alastair Seeley (Spirit Moto2), but neither rider is eligible for championship points.

It was Kennedy’s second win in 2017 after the Dublin man was installed as the winner of a controversial Feature race at Snetterton, when Carrick’s Andrew Irwin believed he had achieved his maiden British Supersport victory.

However, a hearing held on Thursday found that Irwin had passed Kennedy under a yellow flag on the final lap of the race and the young prospect was penalised by one position, pushing him back to second place.

Kennedy, though, was a much more clear-cut winner in Sunday's dramatic race as he hung on to deny Farmer a double, with Irwin also right in contention on the Gearlink Kawasaki as he finished just 0.049 seconds behind his fellow Northern Ireland rider.

The trio traded blows throughout the race to set up a compelling final lap, which saw Kennedy squeeze past Irwin on his MV Agusta before out-dragging Farmer (Appleyard Macadam Yamaha) on the run to the line.

Farmer, who now leads Irwin by 26 points after the first six rounds, said he was more than satisfied with his results from the weekend.

“I didn’t know who was on the back of us and it’s nice to see Jack up there because MV have put a lot of work in,” he said.

“It’s to see Jack get a win but we’re in front of the people who are closest to us in the championship, so that was good for our championship points.

“We’ve come away with a win and a second and the championship lead, so that’s the important thing.”

Race winner Kennedy is also firmly in the title mix, only seven points behind Irwin, although EHA Racing’s David Allingham – eighth on Sunday – has slipped to fourth.

Seeley won Saturday’s Sprint race on the track in damp conditions from Stapleford, with Farmer taking the championship victory as he finished third overall. Irwin was seventh with Kennedy in 12th.

Meanwhile, Carrick’s Glenn Irwin made his return from injury at Brands on the PBM Be Wiser Ducati, finishing 16thand 14th as team-mate Shane Byrne wrapped up a double.

Irwin missed the Knockhill and Snetterton rounds after sustaining a dislocated shoulder and elbow following a crash in free practice at Knockhill.

Byrne beat Honda Racing’s Dan Linfoot by 0.3 seconds in race one, with Leon Haslam in third on the JG Speedfit Kawasaki.

In race two, Byrne won by almost six seconds from James Ellison (McAMS Yamaha), with Christian Iddon finishing third for the Tyco BMW team on his return from injury after a crash at Knockhill. Iddon was eighth in race one.

Rookie Andy Reid, who made his BSB debut on the Tyco BMW at Snetterton, finished 19th and 18th, while Toome’s Michael Laverty was 13th and ninth on the McAMS Yamaha.