Ryde returns with win at Brands Hatch

Kyle Ryde celebrates his win
Kyle Ryde celebrates his win

Jacksdale’s Kyle Ryde marked his 21st birthday in style with a win at Brands Hatch on Sunday in the British Supersport Series.

It was Ryde’s first race back having quit the British Superbikes Series last month, returning instead to the championship in which he finished runner-up in 2015.

Competing on a fully-fledged Moto 2 machine as opposed to a Supersport bike, Ryde is utilising a Kalex framed machine with a Honda engine, slightly down on horsepower but lighter and allowed to use slick tyres.

Having only had one practice session on his new machine, Ryde went into the first practice session relatively unfamiliar with it but still recorded the fourth fastest time.

Saturday’s 12-lap sprint race then took place late in the day and having hovered around fourth and fifth spot, a crash involving another rider forced the end of the race and the positions stood, with Ryde taking fifth.

Warm-up for the feature race saw Ryde secure the fastest time to get his birthday off to a flying start.

In front of around 50,000 people, Ryde started the race well and was third at the end of the first lap.

By lap four Ryde was having problems with his front tyre but he managed to work around it and by lap five of the 18 lap race, the front three bikes had gained a slight advantage on the rest of the pack behind and Ryde was now up into second place.

The battle continued as the front-runners encountered several back markers, and he remained second going into the penultimate lap as leader Ben Currie opened up a substantial lead.

However, Currie suddenly lifted his arm in the air, indicating a problem with his machine, and Ryde saw this before pressing on and taking advantage by passing the stricken Currie and bringing home his first win and also the first win for a Moto 2 bike in the British Supersport Series, ahead of his RS Racing team mate Ryan Owens.