In the opening Bennetts British Superbike Championship race of the weekend, the BikeSocial Sprint, Honda riders Tom Neave and Franco Bourne finished line astern in the final point scoring positions.
Franco and Tom lined up on the grid in seventeenth and twenty-first respectively after experiencing mixed fortunes in Qualifying. Franco, riding a Superbike for the first time at the Cheshire circuit, progressed through Q1 into Q2 and managed to set a new personal best lap time in the process, and with one of his closest gaps to the front of the field, just 1.5 seconds.
Both riders then launched away from the line as the lights went out and had both made up positions by the end of lap one, Franco having pushed up into fourteenth position.
As the laps ticked by Tom Neave too continued his assault up the order and as he set his quickest lap of the weekend on lap seven, he was hot on the heels of his rookie teammate. At this point, the pair were now locked into a fight for point-scoring finishes. Just two laps later Tom scythed past and set about opening the gap to Franco behind.
Come the chequered flag their positions remained unchanged, Tom in fourteenth and Franco fifteenth, both of whom adding championship points to their respective tallies.
In the Pirelli National Superstock Championship, series leader Dan Linfoot rocketed to pole position on his Optimum Bikes Racing Fireblade earlier in the day. He then went on to score yet another race win with a superb last-lap move to continue the undefeated winning run of the Honda Fireblade in Superstock specification. Richard Kerr finished second aboard his AMD Motorsport Honda.
The Honda Racing UK team will be back in action tomorrow, 17th September, for the remaining races of round nine at Oulton Park, the first of which is scheduled for 13:15, and the second at 16:15.