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Record attendance at first BSB event on Snetterton 300

Monday, July 04 2011

A record crowd flocked to Snetterton yesterday for the first MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship round on the new 300 configuration, as 43,000 fans packed the Norfolk circuit to witness two sensational BSB races.

The attendance is believed to be the highest for any race meeting in Snetterton's 60 year history, and comes after a massive programme of redevelopment over the winter to transform it into one of the UK's best circuits for riders and spectators.

The changes at Snetterton included the construction of a new 1-mile infield section and various other improvements to the existing layout to create a 3-mile circuit - the newest in the country. Jonathan Palmer, Chief Executive of Snetterton owner MotorSport Vision, personally designed the new configuration which has been hailed as a huge success by the entire BSB fraternity.

Palmer was delighted with the response. He said: "My ambition for Snetterton was to transform it from being an unremarkable circuit to being considered one of the best in the UK. I applied a huge amount of careful consideration to the design in order to achieve this and provide a fabulous venue for both competitors and spectators. As the biggest event of the Snetterton calendar, BSB was always going to be the acid test. I'm absolutely thrilled with the response we have had from the riders and even more importantly the fans, who voted with their feet to produce a record crowd, 50% higher than last year's BSB! I chatted to many who had come to Snetterton for the first time - and crucially they said they'd certainly be back having had a superb day."

In the opening MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship race on the Snetterton 300, American John Hopkins scored a sensational victory after a last lap dice with title rival Tommy Hill on the Swan Yamaha, with title leader Shane 'Shakey' Byrne finishing third.

Hopkins said: "The circuit is just awesome and I have had more fun over the weekend on the Snetterton 300 than I have anywhere else so far this season. On the new infield section I had been drifting the Samsung Crescent Racing Suzuki and there was definitely the opportunity for some close racing which we saw in the two races and I think that the fans had a great show."

In the second race the rivalry increased between Byrne and Hopkins as the pair duelled for supremacy. On the final lap the pair clashed for the lead at Oggies as Hopkins tried to make a pass down the inside of the HM Plant Honda rider and they both went wide. Hopkins was able to rejoin in third with Byrne fourth as reigning champion Ryuichi Kiyonari stormed through to win whilst Josh Brookes took his first podium of the season in second.

The next round of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship takes place at Oulton Park on 15-17 July. Advance adult tickets for raceday cost from £25 online in advance with children aged 12 and under free. For more information and to book click on the link below or call 0843 453 9000.