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Hill holds off rivals ahead of qualifying

Sunday, May 01 2011

Swan Yamaha's Tommy Hill maintained his position as the fastest rider on track at Oulton Park ahead of this afternoon's race one grid deciding qualifying session as he topped final practice ahead of MSS Colchester Kawasaki's Stuart Easton who moved second in the closing minutes.

Hill had taken the top spot early in the session and was able to remain there until the end of the session whilst Easton continued to move up the order, displacing Michael Laverty on the second Swan Yamaha in the final two minutes.

The Samsung Crescent Racing team had a mixed session, with Jon Kirkham crashing out in the first ten minutes at Druids and was unable to rejoin for the remainder of the free practice although he wasn't injured. John Hopkins also had a brief incident when he had a minor crash at Hizzys whilst running eighth with less than 15 minutes of the session to go but he was able to rejoin and continue the session. The American made amends though by moving up to fourth in the final minute ahead of Michael Rutter who also made big improvements during the session.

Gary Mason just dropped outside of the top five in the closing stages by the ever-improving Rutter as Dan Linfoot finished seventh on the Sorrymate.com Honda despite running as high as fifth earlier in the session. James Westmoreland was the fastest of the Motorpoint Yamahas in eighth after a stronger performance from the rookie to finish ahead of Josh Brookes who dropped down to eighth with Ryuichi Kiyonari rounding out the top ten. Shane 'Shakey' Byrne was nudged down to twelfth and Glen Richards was the fastest of the Mirror.co.uk BSB Evo riders in fourteenth.

MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Oulton Park, free practice three:

1. Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) 1m:35.608s
2. Stuart Easton (MSS Colchester Kawasaki) +0.541s
3. Michael Laverty (Swan Yamaha) +0.702s
4. John Hopkins (Samsung Crescent Racing) +1.038s
5. Michael Rutter (Rapid Solicitors-Bathams Ducati) +1.105s
6.Gary Mason (MSS Colchester Kawasaki) +1.182s
7. Dan Linfoot (Sorrymate.com Honda) +1.250s
8. James Westmoreland (Motorpoint Yamaha) +1.309s
9. Josh Brookes (Relentless Suzuki by TAS) +1.535s
10. Ryuichi Kiyonari (HM Plant Honda) +1.601s

You can purchase tickets for the Oulton Park round of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship this weekend on the gate with adult admission 12 today and 30 on Monday, children 12 and under go free. For further ticket information click the link below or call 0843 453 9000.