Kent’s Brands Hatch Circuit offered varying autumnal conditions when it played host to the season finisher of the Bennetts British Superbikes championship on 15-17 October.
With the fabled full-length ‘GP’ layout being used to mark the significant occasion – a firm favourite for riders – the weekend saw thrilling final races from all classes and categories falling under the BSB umbrella.
A number of EBC Brakes-equipped riders were out to claim their final few points of the year – some of which can be seen below.
Ben Luxton, Dan Brooks and Joe Talbot (JR Performance)
– Pirelli National Superstock 600
“National Superstock 600 champion!
“What a season it has been. There were some highs and some lows… all part of racing I guess. I’m very proud of what a great little team we are and what we have achieved in such a short while of being a team.
“Best ever season of racing for me, with three pole position starts and five race victories out of eight races!”
– Ben Luxton
“A very positive season where we showed a lot of pace in most rounds. My best qualifying was a P6 at Silverstone where I also had my best race finish.
“This was all despite having a couple of tumbles towards the end of the season that didn’t do my confidence any favours.
“We’re heading into a nice big break which will give us time to recharge. I can’t wait to come back fighting at the sharp end next season…”
– Dan Brooks
“It’s been an absolute pleasure to race with the JR Performance team this season – my first ever season in this championship. I had a best qualifying position of P6 at the final round, and also achieved my personal best result this season of P6 here. Roll on 2021!”
– Joe Talbot
Luke Hopkins (Hopkins Racing)
– Pirelli National Superstock 1000
Hollins Strategic Land rider, Luke Hopkins from Sittingbourne, completed his rookie Pirelli National Superstock 1000 season with another top 20 finish at Brands Hatch. The 19-year-old stepped up to the British Superbike support series at the beginning of 2020 after winning two 600cc championships and finishing runner-up in two club 1000cc series.
Having completed two dry free practice sessions on the Friday, the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 riders faced very different track conditions for qualifying on Saturday. Although they started late morning, overnight rain had left a damp track and the cold temperatures did not help to dry the track. Lap times were significantly slower for the 36 riders. In the conditions, Hopkins managed a time of 1:38.496 which put him 28th on the grid.
With only one race from this series over the weekend, Hopkins made a strong start, moving from 28th on the grid to 26th by the end of the first lap. He was soon elevated to 25th as he continued his progress on the second lap of the 2.7-mile circuit.
By the fourth lap, aided by a couple of riders crashing out, Hopkins had his Honda into 22nd position after overtaking Josh Wood. They were in a group battling for a top 20 position. He dropped to 23rd briefly as Josh Wood retook the position.
His progress was only temporarily halted as he then passed two riders to move into 21st place on lap six of the 14-lap race. Having got by both Wood and Cummins, Hopkins was able to make a gap and begin to move towards McNealy in 20th.
With five laps remaining, Hopkins had his Honda in 20th but the gap to the next rider was too large to close in the final few laps. He went on to take another top 20 finish.
“2020 has been an interesting year for us. Off the back of four successful club championships in 2019, we stepped up to race in the highly competitive Superstock 1000cc class of British Superbikes. There are over 35 really good racers in the class and some with huge experience.
“We had to make some changes this year including switching bikes towards the end of the season. I am really pleased to have got some points this year and regularly beaten my target of a top 25 finish. Of course, I don’t do this alone so must thank Hollins Strategic Land and all my sponsors. I am looking forward to racing again in 2021 and hope that the fans will be able to be there too.”
– Luke Hopkins