Öhlins took its fourteenth BSB title in sixteen years at Brands Hatch this weekend, proving once again the choice of winners with the top four championship finishers all running the Öhlins suspension. The BSB title adds to the World Superbike glory that Carlos Checca provided Öhlins with last weekend and also the success in MotoGP with the entire grid selecting to use the high quality suspension.
This domination will come as no surprise to BSB fans who will remember that as well as dominating both the MotoGP and World Superbike Championship in 2010, the top three in last year’s BSB Championship all used Öhlins suspension. In fact an incredible 14 out of the last 16 BSB Championships have been won using the Swedish firm’s high end components.
However while last year’s Championship winning HM Plant Honda team and third placed Samsung Crescent Suzuki are experienced in using Öhlins suspension, 2011 has been the first year that the newly formed Swan Yamaha SMR team has raced with them. The decision to swap to Öhlins suspension has brought the team instant success with Tommy Hill taking the title and Michael Laverty finishing fourth.
Swan Yamaha SMR rider Tommy Hill said “I’ve been with Öhlins all the way since I first sat on a Superbike in 2004 with the Virgin Yamaha team. You know you’re always going to get good feedback and the stuff we’ve got on the Swan Yamaha is mega – and now I have a BSB title to prove it!“
Although not new to Öhlins, former MotoGP and current Samsung Crescent Suzuki rider John Hopkins has proved to be the sensation of the season, challenging Tommy Hill for the title right up until the last corner of the last lap in the closest BSB season ever.
The hot ticket in BSB for 2011 is the latest generation of Öhlins FGR 100 Superbike forks, featuring the new TTX25 cartridge design with its lighter yet more rigid outer tubes for improved rider feel. At the rear, an Öhlins TTX36 2011 spec shock with twin tube design keeps traction to a maximum while providing exemplary damping characteristics and uniform performance during race distances.
It’s not just the Superbike teams that benefit from the experience of the Öhlins technicians. The BSB race paddock has Öhlins support vehicles catering for different riders and teams from all BSB classes.
Chris Witter, Business Development Manager, Öhlins Racing UK commented, “What a day’s racing! That was probably the best race I have ever seen. Congratulations to Tommy for taking the title but I have to also congratulate John for his determination and superb riding this year. In a debut year in a series as tough as BSB, Hopper has done fantatsically. Looking back on the season it may seem easy for Öhlins to take another BSB title, but as Tommy has shown, success comes with hard work and few work harder than the technicians at Öhlins. The top four in the BSB championship, WSB and MotoGP – it has been another great year for the company both on and off road.”
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship standings
1. Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) 647
2. John Hopkins (Samsung Crescent Racing Suzuki) 645
3. Shane Byrne (HM Plant Honda) 625
4. Michael Laverty (Swan Yamaha) 601
Öhlins British Superbike Championship Successes
1996 – Niall Mackenzie – Cadbury’s Boost YZF750- Öhlins
1997 – Niall Mackenzie – Cadbury’s Boost YZF750- Öhlins
1998 – Niall Mackenzie – Cadbury’s Boost YZF750- Öhlins
1999- Troy Bayliss - INS GSE Ducati 996 - Öhlins
2000- Neil Hodgson - INS GSE Ducati 996 – Öhlins
2001- John Reynolds – Reve Red Bull Ducati 996 – Öhlins
2002- Steve Hislop - MonsterMob Ducati 998 – Öhlins
2003- Shane Byrne - MonsterMob Ducati 998 – Öhlins
2004- John Reynolds – Rizla Crescent Suzuki GSXR1000 – Öhlins – Harris supported
2005- Gregorio Lavilla – GSE Airwaves Ducati 999 – Öhlins– Harris supported
2008- Shane Byrne – GSE Airwaves Ducati 1098 – Öhlins– Harris supported
2009- Leon Camier – GSE Airwaves Yamaha YZF-R1 – Öhlins– Harris supported
2010- Ryuichi Kiyonari – HM Plant Honda CBR1000RR – Öhlins– Harris supported
2011- Tommy Hill - Swan Yamaha - Öhlins– Harris supported