Terrific treble for OMG Racing's Ray, team-mate Ryde secures maiden British Superbike Championship showdown place
BRAD Ray was in imperious form at the latest round of the British Superbike Championship at Snetterton as he secured his and OMG Racing's their first-ever treble.
In a further boost to the Stratford-based team, Ray's team-mate Kyle Ryde secured a maiden showdown place.
On a weekend where the mood was a more sombre affair after the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. Ray rode an exceptional opening sprint race to hold off Tarran Mackenzie by 2.4s with team-mate Ryde taking third.
The first of the two longer format races once again saw Ray and Mackenzie battle it out for honours.
In his 150th BSB start, Ray led the way from his tenth pole position of the season, before Mackenzie recovered from a sluggish start.
It was advantage Mackenzie in the closing stages but a perfectly executed pass at the end of the back straight saw the Kent rider take his second win of the weekend and his second double of 2022 aboard his Yamaha R1.
With a 30-point buffer over his nearest challenger for the final showdown position, the brief was simple for Ryde and that was to finish ahead of Danny Buchan.
The Nottinghamshire rider started fifth on the grid, 15 places ahead of Buchan, and got off to a strong start as the lights went out.
Looking comfortable in the top five, Ryde began to lose touch with the lead group with a technical issue as Buchan charged forward but knowing what he needed to do, the former British 125cc and GP2 champion brought his Yamaha R1 home in sixth place, securing that all-important showdown place.
Race three was a carbon copy of race two in the initial stages as Ray and Mackenzie scorched to an early lead.
It was Ray who took control before running deep at Montreal, allowing Mackenzie to slip through.
The Scot tried to make a break but Ray sat doggedly behind the McAMS Yamaha rider before the safety car was deployed to allow the recovery of an expired motorcycle just past the start line.
Mackenzie was keen to restart but race control deemed he was too keen and issued a +2s time penalty to the top three for passing the safety car.
Ray made his move on Mackenzie at almost two-thirds distance before crucially extending his lead to 1.7s at the flag, ultimately taking victory by 0.7s from Hickman as Mackenzie and a bitterly disappointed Glenn Irwin were relegated to third and fourth.
Ryde rounded off his weekend with another solid top ten finish in eighth place.
The series now moves on to Oulton Park and into its showdown phase next weekend where the top eight riders have their points reset to 1000 plus the podium credits accrued across the regular season.