Code red: History made as Redding celebrates debut Bennetts BSB title victory

Scott Redding has made Bennetts British Superbike Championship history by becoming the first rider to celebrate a title victory in his debut season, finishing third to take the crown in the season finale to seal the PBM-run Be Wiser Ducati team its seventh Superbike crown.

Redding’s much-anticipated debut in Bennetts BSB came after the highs of battling for race wins and finishing runner-up in the Moto2 World Championship, to the lows of his 2018 MotoGP campaign when he endured a torrid time before he set his sights on a new path.

Redding arrived in the championship rejuvenated and ready to compete with arguably one of his biggest career challenges - new circuits, a completely new motorcycle and some of the fiercest competition in worldwide motorsport.

The season didn’t start without drama for Redding, who was injured in a pre-season training incident, but he was determined to overcome the challenge ahead of him and was ready to get to grips with the Be Wiser Ducati V4 Superbike for the start of testing.

In testing it was clear that Redding was adapting rapidly to the Superbike and was instantly at the sharp end of the timesheets, but when it came to the opening round it was a rollercoaster weekend for the 26-year-old. An opening third-place podium finish in the first race on his return to Silverstone was a strong start to his campaign, but a clash in race two saw Redding down and out of the action and feeling battered and bruised.

The next stop was Oulton Park and notoriously one of the toughest circuits to learn on the Bennetts BSB calendar, but Redding focused on the job in hand, continuing to work hard throughout the weekend to bag important points with fifth and fourth-place finishes.

However heading into Donington Park, expectation was high for Redding; the circuit had been the scene of his first British GP win earlier in his career and he didn’t buckle under the pressure. Claiming his first Bennetts BSB race win and following it up in style by completing a hat trick of victories.

On the first visit to Brands Hatch though a tyre choice gamble put Redding out of the points and rueing what could have been in the opening race. However he recovered in race two to finish third to hold second place in the standings ahead of Knockhill.

The Scottish circuit proved to again be a happy hunting ground for Redding; claiming a second place before standing on the top step of the podium again in race two to lead Josh Brookes and Tommy Bridewell in the points table.

A double victory at Snetterton kept Redding at the top of the standings, but the gap closed at Thruxton; after a podium finish in race one, the Be Wiser Ducati rider fell foul of the rules and was issued a time penalty for not completing the long lap and was subsequently outside of the points.

Moving onto Cadwell Park and Redding continued to prove how he could rapidly adapt to the tricky UK circuits and narrowly missed out on the podium with a fourth place in race one before a clash with Andrew Irwin ended his second race prematurely.

Already confirmed in the Showdown, Redding took a triple helping of podium finishes on the return to Oulton Park with a victory and two third places to hold second in the standings going into the crucial final three rounds.

And the Showdown began in dominating fashion for Redding; winning the opening four races – two at Assen and two at Donington Park - to hold a 28-point advantage coming into the triple-header Showdown at Brands Hatch.

However, going into the final race of the weekend Brookes had halved the advantage and despite completing an incredible hat trick, Redding’s third place in the final race was enough to seal the title in his debut season.

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