As you know we are desperate for some track time to get the bike set up properly before the Oulton Park round of British Super Bikes.
If you don’t know, there has been a change in the way we are running Alex in the Championships.
We have agreed a deal with ASTRO where Alex will continue to race under the Astro banner but with the flexibility of Alex “Senior” looking after the bike and running out of our own awning.
We went to Knockhill 2 weeks ago and completely changed the set-up of the bike, Alex went fairly well getting a couple of second places a 3rd and a 4th.
We then took the engine out and gave it to YPE ltd, who dialed in the cams and fitted a Kit Gasket (All that is allowed within the rules of the Super Stock class)
I had better explain that the bike Alex was using at BSB had already this done to it by YPE, the bike we have been given to run now, was the ASTRO wet / spare bike, so I am doing everything I can for him to try and get Alex a competitive set-up.
I didn’t like the front suspension that had been fitted to the bike so ASTRO gave us forks that were fitted to another bike, these I think are far superior to the ones previously fitted but it also put us back to almost square one with set-up, so we took advantage of a track day and race day at Mallory Park last weekend.
On the test day we got loads of time on track and got a good dry set-up, so much so; Alex never even bothered to go out in the last two sessions of the day as he could see no benefit for the extra costs involved (needed new tyres).
Race day was as you’d have bet…….. WET! ………But again this was great, as it gave us the chance to search for a wet set-up for the bike with no loss as we are not contending the EMRA Championship. www.eastmidlandracing.co.uk
Timed practice. With no practice in the wet conditions it was straight into timed practice, I had entered Alex into two classes.
His own Super Stock Class and also into Super Sport (different rules, basically unlimited tuning, better tyres and quickshifters)
In Qualifying for Super Stock Class Alex qualified 7th (and due to my inability to hold on to all the timing sheets, from memory) with a fastest lap of 1min 6.25 sec.
Now the Super Sport timed qualifying was held directly after the Super Stock Class session, I had a chance to talk with Alex and make a few adjustments before he returned to the track, he qualified 4th in this class with a fastest lap of 1min 1.51 sec.
Alex first race of the day was in Super Sport he put up a very good account of himself finishing 3rd.
It must be said from the starting gird of 24 riders ‘Steve Tomes’ and ‘Michael Nibblet’ were in a class of their own!
Stunning riding from those two seen them finish 18 seconds in front of Alex but 3rd was a very good result for Alex using his Super Stock Class bike amongst 24 Super Sport bikes.
After lunch it was straight out for the Super Stock Class race, I swear 10 minutes before it was raining, by the time I sent him to the grid it was dry!
I didn’t have time to change tyres so told him it was just a test session if he thought it was dangerous or he was not happy to stop racing and come in.
From his start position of 7th he was into the lead by the second corner and just stretched his lead, 2 seconds a lap faster than second place man Sam Middlemas (another BSB Super Stock Class contender) Alex finished the 10 lap race 24 seconds (almost half a lap) in front of him!
He had done well however what he didn’t know that this race was for ‘The Richard Jones Trophy’, Richard was an ardent supporter of racing at Mallory and since his death, his family have donated the trophy and prize in his honour.
Alex was whisked away to the presentation in the Hailwood Suite in front of 50 guests (I didn’t know either, so no photo’s).
2nd Super Sport race and a repeat held in the wet, with Alex finishing 3rd again (again; lost the timing sheet, but from memory he had a good tussle with a few SS riders before taking 3rd place.
2nd Super Stock Class race a repeat! Even down to it drying up seconds before he went out.
This time held over a shortened 8 laps Alex finished 18 seconds in front of Sam.
Alex’ fastest lap a 57.18 the fastest I think he has ever went round Mallory.
Alex was also privileged to be presented with ‘The Rider of The Day’ award for his performance!
So there you have it, another successful test session, with now hopefully us having both good base, dry and wet set-ups for the configuration of bike we will have for the rest of the season.
We are at Knockhill next Saturday and Sunday for the Scottish Championships (12th 13th July) www.knockhill.com then the moment of truth, as we return for the next round of the British Super Bike Championship at Oulton Park on the 18th 19th 20th July.
Thanks for Your Support!