Silverstone 28th September 2008
Round 10 of the National Championship took place as usual, alongside British Super Bikes at the Northampton Silverstone circuit, despite very little time on the track previous to this, the Astro Kawasaki rider Alex Gault put in a stunning performance.
From his first outing in Free Practice on the Friday, the Scottish youngster looked very racy setting the 12th fastest time and again first Kawasaki over the line, in front of him were 9 Yamaha R6’s and 2 Triumph 675’s.
There were 52 riders entered all fighting to make the grid for Sundays race, only 40 would make it!
Qualifying 1 held on the Friday evening seen Gault improve again, up into provisional 7th position with a lap time of 1.32.985.
So strong is the opposition in this class the top 40 bikes were separated by on 3.3 seconds.
Qualifying 2 saw Alex drop down the leader board to 10 position, this was expected as the team had used the session as a race simulation sending the 17 year old out on the tyres he had used previously rather than new ones which is usual for Qualifying
What was not expected was Alex went almost half a second quicker with the bike in race trim on used tyres.
Setting a stunning time of 1.32.51 and reporting no problems with the bike his mechanics had an easy Saturday afternoon relaxing in the sunbathed paddock, this was the first round of the championship this season that it had been totally dry for the whole weekend.
Morning warm-up on the Sunday went without a hitch, posting an 8th fastest time of 1.32.96 it did however set the scene for what was to come in the race, the top 27 riders separated by less than 2 seconds!
Alex held station from his start position of 10 on the opening lap but was promoted to 8th place as they crossed the line due to a collision between championship contender Robbie Brown and Northern Ireland racer Jamie Hamilton both ending up off track but managing to rejoin at the back of the pack.
Up front the pace was ballistic Luke Jones and Jimmy Hill had set a furious 1.34.1 out lap compared to Alex’ 1.37.2; the crash between Brown and Hamilton slowing the Astro Kawasaki rider.
By lap 7 of the 14 lap race Gault had made it into 7th place but by now things had settled, Luke Jones (Yamaha) out front with Lee Johnston (the championship leader) (Yamaha) and Jimmy hill (Yamaha) in close pursuit.
This was another race where Alex just failed to tag onto the lead group, however it can be put down as a stunning ride by the youngster, setting very close to leader lap times of 1.31.9 the fastest he has ever gone round the Silverstone circuit.
Again first Kawasaki home and one of only six riders to get under the 1.32second lap time, the Astro Kawasaki rider eventually taking 6th place as the finishing flag fell.
All in all a very surprising result when all things are considered.
Alex would like to thank all his sponsors and commercial partners for making this possible and also his mechanic for putting a fantastic bike together for him.
Keep up with Alex's progress at www.minimotoracer.com