Having solved the critical issues of yesterday afternoon in Race 1 in the rain, just 24 hours later Tommy Bridewell promptly returned to his usual competitive levels. Increasingly becoming the rider to beat in the championship as well as leader of the BSB standings, in the final race on the ups and downs of Brands Hatch the number 46 doubled down after his win in the previous Race 2, at the same time recording a new 1-2 finish for the BeerMonster PBM Ducati squadron. With Glenn Irwin second, the two teammates fought it out tooth and nail for the win with only 133 thousandths of a second separating them at the finish line. All after 20 very hard-fought laps.
After a two-year period, short on satisfaction to say the least, Paul Bird's team has returned to the top positions more in line with its glorious tradition, optimising its line-up of expert, hungry, fast riders and domestic Superbike specialists. This was perfectly visible in Race 3. Once he took the lead on lap 12, Tommy Bridewell then overpowered his team-mate in the sprint finish, as on two separate occasions in the previous round at Snetterton. TB46 scored his sixth win of the season, the thirteenth in his BSB career, pulling out a substantial lead in the championship.
Bridewell pulls away in the championship
After five victories in the last six races, Tommy Bridewell now has 34.5 points lead over Glenn Irwin, who looked to be in difficulty with the management of the Pirelli tyres in the final stages. Considering that from this year the Showdown will no longer be based on the playoff system used until 2022,and at mid-point of the 2023 season, a two-way affair between the Ducati riders for the championship is looming: Kyle Ryde (forced to retire due to a broken gearbox) is now 77 points behind, Josh Brookes at -81 (who had to retire following a disastrous slide shortly after the start at Paddock Hill Bend).
With Christian Iddon (4th) and Danny Kent (5th) gradually being left behind by the leading group, Race 1 winner Ryan Vickers showed that he has the potential to break Ducati's supremacy. Feeling increasingly at ease on his LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha R1, the 2018 British Superstock 600 Champion finished third at +0.237s, remaining in contention for the win until the chequered flag. Things are looking good in view of the next round on 11-13 August on the very fast Thruxton track where, in recent times, the Iwata four-cylinder bike has always gone well.