Rory Skinner confirmed his place as the youngest ever rider to secure a place in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship’s title deciding Showdown with a strong weekend at the iconic Cadwell Park circuit.
The 20-year-old Cheshire Mouldings FS-3 Racing Kawasaki rider scored a fantastic second place finish in Sunday’s 12-lap eBay Sprint race and followed that up with two thrilling fifths in Bank Holiday Monday’s longer feature races. The results see the former British Supersport Champion move up to third overall and means that he is mathematically guaranteed of a top eight finish with one round and three races of the main season remaining. The Perth born rider will join the seven other Title Fighters to decide the destination of the 2022 title over the final three race weekends.
Despite having little experience of the narrow and undulating Lincolnshire woodland circuit, Rory was in sensational form on the first day of racing, going under the previous best lap time to take second in the one-lap superpole qualifying session, and repeating that result in the sprint race to take his fifth podium finish of the season.
Monday’s action saw Rory right in the thick of things again, dicing with former champion Leon Haslam in both races and taking fifth each time in two hugely competitive races, despite some arm muscle problems around the physically demanding circuit.
After the final race Rory said: “My arm played up a little bit and I lost a bit of power in it mid way through. When Leon came past I felt like my pace was a little bit stronger and although we passed a few times I never quite had the strength to make it stick, but I knew that if I kept attacking him then that would limit the opportunities for those behind to attack me.
“Two P5s at Cadwell Park, and a second yesterday, is more than I could ever have imagined coming here, and it is awesome to secure a place in the showdown with one round to go. Thank you so much to my team for all their support and for giving me a great bike. I’m really looking forward to Snetterton.”
At 20-years-old Rory becomes the youngest rider to take a BSB showdown place, taking the record from Jake Dixon, Alex Lowes and Bradley Ray, who have all qualified for the Showdown, which was introduced in 2010, as 21-year-olds.
The next round of the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship takes place at the Snetterton circuit on the weekend of September 9-11. Skinner will be looking to rack up some top three finishes around in the Norfolk circuit, in order to score some podium credits to add to the base points he takes into the Showdown phase of the championship.