This year’s premier South African two-wheeler racing title was clinched in style at the East London Grand Prix circuit on Saturday (August 28). Cell C Suzuki racer Hudson Kennaugh became the 2004 Radiator SA Superbike champion by winning Rounds 13 and 14 of the title chase around this country’s fastest race circuit. In the process Kennaugh also set the quickest two-wheeler lap time in the history of the East London circuit. -< p>- With six rounds of the season’s title chase left to contest, the Suzuki rider can no longer be caught on the Championship points ladder. Kennaugh gave notice of his winning intentions during Saturday morning’s Official Qualifying session, when he planted the Cell C Suzuki solidly on pole position. Joining him on the front row of the starting grid were his Cell C Suzuki team mate Trevor Crookes, Stewart MacLeod (Arlen Ness Kawasaki) and outgoing South African Superbike Champion Russell Wood on his Autopage Cellular Yamaha. -< p>- As has become his trademark this season, Kennaugh won the day’s opening race with authority, leading from flag to flag. Behind him, things did not proceed as orderly. Crookes had a terrible start on his Cell C Suzuki and dropped to the back of the field, leaving MacLeod and Wood to contest the second place. Wood’s challenge ended when he high-sided his machine in the pit corner on lap four, while MacLeod’s Kawasaki was slowed by tyre vibration from the fifth tour. That left First Technology Honda riders Sheridan Morias and Shaun Whyte to take the second and third places ahead of MacLeod, Crookes, Greg Dreyer (Autopage Cellular Yamaha) and Arushen Moodley (First Technology Honda). The top ten list was rounded out by Kawasaki racers Robert Cragg and Garth Norris, plus Greame van Breda (Kreepy Krauly Bioguard Yamaha). -< p>- Knowing that he could clinch this year’s title in the second race, Kennaugh wasted no time in taking the lead at the start. This time he did not just disappear into the distance though - a determined Sheridan Morias rode his Honda out of its skin, to harass Kennaugh all the way. In the end the Honda’s tyres started to lose grip and Morias settled for second place, ahead of his First Technology Honda teammates Shaun Whyte and Arushen Moodley. A faultless ride netted fifth place for Greame van Breda on his Yamaha, closely followed by the Kawasakis of Robert Cragg and Stewart MacLeod. The respective eighth-, ninth- and tenth places went to Lance Isaacs (Mecer Ducati), Donovan Fourie (Bike SA Suzuki) and Gavin Ramsay (Kreepy Krauly Bioguard Yamaha).
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2004 RADIATOR SA SUPERBIKE CHAMPIONSHIP TITLE CLINCHED