E2E Racing News

26 March 2012

Glorious Weather at Donington Park (Well Eventually!)

Donington Park - Race 1 - Lee leads the way!

The team headed to Donington Park for Round 2 of the Thundersport GB Golden Era Superbike series.

Both riders where on the back-foot as other commitments meant they had to miss the practice day, so both would have no setup time and jump straight into qualifying with no practice (Lee R. having not ridden the Mille round Donington Park at all).

Saturday morning the circuit was covered in fog, which didn't clear until nearly midday, this meant races on Saturday were shortened and our class would have one double points race as opposed to two races.

Lee R's Report:
Not having any testing was going to be a problem, we had to guess at gearing and setup and go out and do the best we could in qualifying. To make matters worse Ian Simpson (Ex BSB and TT Winner) was riding a factory spec rc45 - so it looked like we'd be battling for 2nd place this weekend!

After a frantic and messy qualifying session (including a red flag, and me only getting in 5 laps) I was surprised to find I'd qualified 3rd, front row, which was good enough for me, we made a few tweaks to the suspension and prepared for our only race on Saturday, which was due to be lengthened to 12 laps to compensate for us losing a race. More stoppages and an incident on our warm-up lap meant we were down to 6 laps - on a double points race - I had to pull my finger out.

The race started and Simpson shot off like a train, I chased after him, much to my surprise Josh Daley screamed past me down Craner Curves, the race turned into a scrap between me and Josh as Simpson slowly escaped, until about lap 4/5 when I got passed Josh and started to reel in Ian. I set fastest lap after fastest lap as I caught him up, then on the last lap I made a massive lunge into the Melbourne Hairpin and took the lead, I rode the last two corners as defensive as I could and took the win by 0.015 of a second!

Well chuffed with the victory, even if I did mug poor Ian who'd rode a perfect race until then. Josh Daley is some kind of corner speed hero and put up a great fight.

Sunday wasn't so good! - In warm-up Simpson stamped his authority on the class and set a lap quicker than I'd managed in the race, but I was on pole with the quickest "Mega Lap" on the previous day.

In both races Ian cleared off, I had a fight with Josh again in the first race before I got passed him and he then retired. In the 2nd race I had a massive near high-side moment on the warm-up lap and was convinced I had an issue with my rear tyre, so set off in the race at a steady pace, dropped to about 6th/7th and then picked up the pace as I gained confidence in the rear tyre and made my way back to 2nd.

Not a bad weekend really, we've extended our lead in the championship - loads of little issues to sort out on the bike - she's going off to Griff @ Aprilia Performance this weekend to be fettled before Mallory Park - my local circuit!

Thanks to my brother Ross for the awesome photo!

Lee P's report:
This was not the best return following my crash at Brands.

Friday practise was arranged by another company and spaces where limited, therefore I could not get a place on either the noisy day (Thursday) nor the quiet day (Friday), not the best start, I need my practise.

We arrived on Saturday to a very foggy Donington, the fog did not start to clear until around 11am, resulting in a rushed 15min qualifying session and double points, single race. The qualifying session was stopped by two bad crashes, best wishes to Paul Willis and Dave Harnett, which did not help matters. My qualifying time was about 6 seconds off my usual pace, I just couldn’t find the flow and the more I tried the slower I became, leading to frustration and disappointment. I qualified 18th out of 24 and realised I had a lot to do in the race.

Race 1 / 2  - I had a good start off the grid and made about 5 places at the first corner, but then got a bit tangled up down into the old hair-pin and dropped 2 places. My times were not improving and I found myself stuck in a grove. I finished a disappointing 16th, but at least I got a signature for my rookie vest, 5 more and I don’t have to wear it.

Race 3 / 4 – I woke up Sunday with a much improved mental state, although still foggy for sometime, things got underway as per the schedule. Warm up went well, I concentrated on my gears and lines, desperately trying to find the flow of the track and improve my times. Again I got a good start in both races, making 3 – 5 places on the first corner. During race 3 I had a great little tussle with a Kawasaki 750 which I beat and managed to score a point, which helped me settle down and regain some confidence ahead of race 4. Races 4 again went well, although I did not improve on my position of race 3, I still scored a point and managed to do my best lap time, which was still 2 – 3 seconds off my estimated time.

All in all, I’m glad to have got through the weekend with a couple of points and without a broken bike / rider. Mallory next and hoping to do a lot better, top 10 this time for sure!!!!

Thanks to the team for all their help, assistance and encouragement I couldn’t do it without you.

Category: Racing News
Bookmark and Share
posted by The Team

roadracer.net by E2E Solutions