Mar-Train Racing’s Stuart Easton wrapped up a superb double at Assen to increase his lead in the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship to 34 points over Alastair Seeley.
Easton won Saturday’s Sprint race for the Northern Ireland team to claim a maximum 25 points as Carrick man Seeley finished in fifth.
And the 30-year-old Scot put more daylight between himself and his key title rival at the top with a comfortable all-the-way victory in race two yesterday on the Yamaha R6.
Seeley, who had been lying in eighth position in the opening stages, rallied to battle his way through into third but eventually missed out on a rostrum place after his team-mate, Ben Wilson, prevailed in a last-gasp battle for the last podium place with Seeley at the final chicane.
Samsung Honda’s Jason O’Halloran finished as the runner-up, 1.146 seconds behind Easton.
The victorious Hawick man said afterwards: “I wanted the points more than anything. It was a good race and the times were pretty steady, but I think the wind is a lot stronger today - but a win is a win.
“We’ve got four races to go and I’ve a 34-point lead now, so we need to be strong at Silverstone and make the job easier at Brands Hatch.”
Mar-Train Racing team owner, Tim Martin, hailed Easton’s performance but said he expects Seeley to keep fighting until the end.
“That was as good a weekend as Stuart has had on the Mar-Train Yamaha. We go to Silverstone with a 34-point lead but we will remain focused as it’s never over until mathematically impossible and we expect Seeley to put up a good fight.”
Wilson, who denied Seeley the chance to finish on the podium, pointed out afterwards that team orders are not in force, even though his Northern Ireland team-mate is battling for the title.
“I saw Alastair going for the outside but I just let the brakes off because I wanted that third place. There’s no team orders and I wanted that third place,” he said.
“Alastair is a hard rider and I’m a hard rider. I’ve had a bit of a disappointing season and although I’ve been there or thereabouts I’ve had no luck.”
Glenn Irwin, who has joined CF Motorsport, was 12th on the Yamaha R6 with team-mate Nikki Coates 22nd.
Meanwhile, there was controversy in the opening round of the MCE British Superbike Championship when Alex Lowes was excluded from race two after running into the rear of Shane Byrne’s Kawasaki, sending the defending champion crashing out at high speed.
Samsung Honda rider Lowes went on to win the race but was later disqualified as a result, with Milwaukee Yamaha’s James Ellison promoted to first ahead of PJ Jacobsen and Ryuichi Kiyonari.
Lowes won a thrilling race one from Byrne by 0.102s with new Milwaukee Yamaha signing Tommy Bridewell finishing third followed by Josh Brookes and Noriyuki Haga.
With two rounds remaining, Byrne holds a one-point lead over Lowes.
In the Ducati 848 Challenge series, Marty Nutt twice finished third.
There was disappointment for Belfast’s Andy Reid in the British Motostar race, who was disqualified from the results by Race Control for ‘unsafe overtaking manoeuvres’.