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Mark Cheetham (Highsparks Motorsport) made the most of his skills in wet conditions to take a decisive victory in the Race 2 at Donington Park today.

Cheetham’s teammate Lewis Rollo managed to lead from pole before Cheetham, who had started 6th on the grid, made a pass on the race leader at the end of Lap 3.

The two riders started to gap the field and when Dijon Compton crashed out on the following lap, Phil Atkinson was promoted to a podium position with a potential Highsparks Motorsport podium lockout. But disaster struck on Lap 6 when Rollo crashed out from 2nd place at Foggy Esses.

Cheetham passed the chequered flag with a dominant 11 second lead ahead of his teammate Atkinson and Josh Wainwright (Boast Plumbing).

Mark Cheetham leaves Donington leading the championship with 34 points. Josh Wainwright sits 2nd with 29 points with Phil Atkinson a single point behind in 3rd place.

Mark Cheetham (Highsparks Motorsport #21) – 1st
"I don’t know what it is about the feel that I get in the wet. Obviously, good setup from the amazing Highsparks team. I come from a dirt bike background and I’ve just got a good feel for it I think. Just got to be smooth, keep the corner speed up and just don’t snatch at the brakes or the throttle, just keep it rolling. Shit, I don’t want to give all my tips away here, what am I doing? Also, today parts of the racing line were like ice, so I was just moving off the racing line. Especially down into the Melbourne loop, I think there was something on the track because it was so greasy. So, I just went completely, totally on the other side of the track as if I was block passing somebody. People must think what’s he doing? But I was just trying to make sure I was staying on two wheels."

Phil Atkinson (Highsparks Motorsport #2) – 2nd
"We decided to miss Free Practice so we didn’t have any wet training. We just thought it was just a bit risky to go out and then smash the bikes up and then we wouldn’t have many spares this first round so we chose to skip the first practice. Yesterday’s plan didn’t go to plan, I had some helmet issues and visor issues but AGV have sorted it out today, the visor was mega. Big thanks to Mupo Suspension, the suspension was great. Obviously 1-2, we were running in the top 3 at one stage. So, big thanks to Highsparks, big thanks to all the team and everybody else for helping me and hopefully now we can continue at Brands."

Josh Wainwright (Boast Plumbing #26) – 3rd
"Start as we mean to go on. We come away here with a smile. Especially, as the conditions were treacherous and no one knew what to expect at Round 1. Positive, build on this and having fun and that’s the main thing. Family and friends are all enjoying themselves watching me do what I do and I’m enjoying it more. Bring on Round 2."

Read Ducati Cup Race 1 report