Sep 23, 2012
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by David Swarts
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British Superbike Championship
September 23, 2012
Superbike Race One:
1. Shane Byrne (Kaw ZX-10R), 18 laps, 29:45.302
2. Josh Brookes (Suz GSX-R1000), -4.731 seconds
3. Alex Lowes (Hon CBR1000RR), -4.881
4. Luca Scassa (Hon CBR1000RR), -9.327
5. Noriyuki Haga (Yam YZF-R1), -10.024
6. Tommy Bridewell (BMW S1000RR), -11.026
7. Michael Laverty (Hon CBR1000RR), -11.538
8. James Westmoreland (Hon CBR1000RR), -17.160
9. Stuart Easton (Kaw ZX-10R), -23.137
10. Robbin Harms (Hon CBR1000RR), -23.292
23. Jakub Smrz (Apr RSV1000 Factory), -7 laps, DNF
26. Tommy Hill (Yam YZF-R1), -12 laps, DNF
Race Two Results:
1. Josh Brookes (Suz GSX-R1000), 18 laps, 29:43.606
2. Shane Byrne (Kaw ZX-10R), -0.246 second
3. Alex Lowes (Hon CBR1000RR), -3.018 seconds
4. Tommy Hill (Yam YZF-R1), -3.346
5. Tommy Bridewell (BMW S1000RR), -9.074
6. Noriyuki Haga (Yam YZF-R1), -9.140
7. Michael Laverty (Hon CBR1000RR), -9.245
8. James Westmoreland (Hon CBR1000RR), -17.311
9. Robbin Harms (Hon CBR1000RR), -17.633
10. Stuart Easton (Kaw ZX-10R), -18.891
15. Jakub Smrz (Apr RSV1000 Factory), -25.893
British Supersport Championship
Race One Results:
1. Christian Iddon (Tri Daytona 675), 12 laps, 20:26.408
2. Jack Kennedy (Yam YZF-R6), -0.106 second
3. Richard Cooper (Tri Daytona 675), -0.843
4. Luke Mossey (Tri Daytona 675), -0.874
5. Raymond Schouten (Yam YZF-R6), -0.926
6. Glen Richards (Tri Daytona 675), -1.316
7. Ben Wilson (Kaw ZX-6R), -2.541
8. Glenn Irwin (Yam YZF-R6), -11.050
9. P.J. Jacobsen (Suz GSX-R600), -11.201
10. Taylor Mackenzie (Yam YZF-R6), -11.529
Race Two Results:
1. P.J. Jacobsen (Suz GSX-R600), 15 laps, 25:24.960
2. Christian Iddon (Tri Daytona 675), -0.110 second
3. Glen Richards (Tri Daytona 675), -0.262
4. Raymond Schouten (Yam YZF-R6), -0.500
5. Richard Cooper (Tri Daytona 675), -0.706
6. Glenn Irwin (Yam YZF-R6), -9.929
7. Ben Wilson (Kaw ZX-6R), -10.003
8. Luke Jones (Tri Daytona 675), -18.548
9. Luke Mossey (Tri Daytona 675), -21.801
10. Billy McConnell (Tri Daytona 675), -32.337
More, from a press release issued by MotorSport Vision:
BYRNE AND BROOKES WIN THRILLERS AT DRAMATIC ASSEN
1:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)
2:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) +4.731s
3:Alex Lowes (WFR Honda) +4.881s
4:Luca Scassa (Padgetts Honda) +9.327s
5:Noriyuki Haga (Swan Yamaha) +10.024s
6:Tommy Bridewell (Supersonic BMW) +11.026s
1:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki)
2:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +0.246s
3:Alex Lowes (WFR Honda) +3.018s
4:Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) +3.346s
5:Tommy Bridewell (Supersonic BMW) +9.074s
6: Noriyuki Haga (Swan Yamaha) +9.140s
1:Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) 570
2:Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 568
3:Tommy Hill (Swan Yamaha) 548
4:Alex Lowes (WFR Honda) 534
5:Michael Laverty (Samsung Honda) 532
6:Tommy Bridewell (Supersonic BMW) 521
Josh Brookes snatched a dramatic last corner victory in the second race of a historic first visit by the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship to Assen in front of over 30,000 spectators as the Tyco Suzuki rider claimed a two point advantage in the standings over race one winner Shane "Shakey" Byrne.
Defending champion Tommy Hill's start to the Showdown proved disastrous as he was sidelined from the first race by a incident on the grid following the sighting lap as he collided with a mechanic. He started from pitlane but was later forced to retire.
In the first race Byrne overcame the discomfort of his shoulder injury and the challenges of Samsung Honda's Michael Laverty to power his Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki to a fifth victory of the season ahead of Brookes with Alex Lowes a strong third for WFR Honda.
"I would be lying if I said the shoulder injury was a big problem but in two places where you change position on the bike quickly it kicked in, even so I was able to gap Josh and take the result. It is a great feeling and winning a race like this makes the pain go away for a while," said Byrne.
Byrne led for much of race two but Brookes who had fought his way ahead of Laverty and Lowes after a bad start, was closing in and with three laps to go moved into the lead. Byrne responded going into the final lap as the race win went down to the wire but Brookes made a last gasp bid for the win at the left hander ahead of the chicane and then won the dash to the line.
"It was a good feeling to win that one. I got into the rhythm and was able to make the pass on Shakey but he came back on me and we were going at it for the win. I waited until the last corner before the chicane as that was my best chance, I made the apex clean and was delighted to get the win," said Brookes.
Lowes was again third to claim his first double podium finish, ahead of Hill and Title Fighter Tommy Bridwell, who went one better than in the opening race, while Laverty struggled and finished seventh.
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More, from a press release issued by Swan Yamaha:
DIFFICULT DAY FOR SWAN YAMAHA AT ASSEN SHOWDOWN OPENER
The Swan Yamaha team endured a difficult opening round to the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship Showdown at Assen today as Tommy Hill was struck by bad luck and was forced to retire from the opening race.
Hill had qualified on the front row but as he came to form up on the grid following the sighting lap he was hit by a mechanic which knocked him off the Swan Yamaha. The team worked hard to repair the stricken machine in the garage and Hill started from pitlane, however he was later forced to retire. In race two Hill had pushed hard over the opening laps to run third but was forced back to fourth on the final lap. Hill now lies third in the overall standings and 22 points adrift of leader Josh Brookes.
Noriyuki Haga had two top six finishes after working hard with the team throughout the weekend on the setting of his Swan Yamaha. The Japanese rider now feels confident looking ahead to Silverstone in just a few days time.
Hill said: "It has been a difficult weekend. I was coming through the back of the grid in race one and it was pretty busy and a mechanic from another team didn't realise I was there and ran into me and it jammed the brake lever on. I went over the bars there was nothing that I could do about it. The bike went down, but the team did a great job to do a quick fix and get me out there. In the second race I knew I needed to score the points after the retirement in race one and I got up to speed and was pushing hard and got up to third but Shakey and Josh had got away a bit. I thought I could pull them in but then Alex (Lowes) put in a bit of a harsh move and that put me fourth. We now need to go to Silverstone and get back on the top step of the podium to get those points back in the standings."
Haga said: "I was feeling more comfortable today with the setting of the Swan Yamaha and it is a shame it has taken until this round to find this direction but it means I am happy for Silverstone. I am feeling positive as I could push harder today and we were nearer the front because I want to be on the podium again."
Team manager Gary Ekerold concluded: "It has been a difficult day at the office for Swan Yamaha. Tommy led by ten points coming into this round and leaves 22 behind however it is what happens by the time we reach the final round that counts. Now he just needs to get the Swan Yamaha back on the top step of the podium at Silverstone next weekend. Noriyuki had a better weekend and has found a good direction with the setting. The team now head back to England and hope we can return to winning ways at Silverstone in a few days time."
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More, from a press release issued by Splitlath Redmond Motosport:
Eventful weekend for Splitlath Redmond at Assen
THE Splitlath Redmond team is heading home from an eventful trip to the Netherlands after a promising weekend at the TT Circuit Assen.
Despite a couple of engine failures in today's two MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship races, riders Kuba Smrz and Troy Herfoss are feeling upbeat after a dazzling start to the weekend where they recorded the best performance to date on the team's Aprilia RSV4 machines.
And the team believes it has now turned a massive corner with the development of the bike after Smrz scored the squad's first ever front row grid spot ahead of today's opening race at the Dutch track.
Starting from third on the grid, the Czech Republic rider got a quick getaway, jumping up to second place for the first few corners before slipping down to fourth. As he fought with the frontrunners he dropped down to ninth as he got to grips with his tyres, but by Lap Seven was starting to pick up his pace.
Moving up to eighth a lap later, his lap times began to tumble and he was starting to reel in the riders ahead. However problems struck on Lap 12 when the engine failed and Kuba was forced to pull over and retire.
The team worked hard to replace the engine to get his machine back out and on the grid for Race Two, where he lined up 13th. Getting a decent start he held his position for two laps, but as he began to suffer from chatter he dropped down to 16th.
He made up one place on Lap Five and settled into 15th spot, which he held all the way to the chequered flag to score the team's first point of the year despite his engine failing as he crossed the line in a cloud of smoke.
"It was a difficult weekend for sure," he said. "In Race One I was struggling a bit with the tyre at the start so I wasn't able to realistically fight for fourth or fifth so I was disappointed, and then we had the failure so there was nothing more we could do.
"In the second I had a good start but because it was a new engine we had no experience with it and didn't have the best set-up so we struggled. I had a lot of chatter and even though I pushed it hard, I couldn't do any more.
"It has been quite difficult because this is our first weekend, first time on the bike as we had no chance to test and it is a different electronics set-up to what I am used to. But I've enjoyed my first BSB experience. It's a hard championship and we did well with our fast lap in qualifying so now we just need to build on that."
For Herfoss it was another learning curve as he made further progress with the RSV4 at a track he loves.
The Australian qualified in 19th spot for the opening race, but encountered a technical problem just three laps in and was forced to pull into the pits. As a result he didn't get a fast lap in and had to start Race Two from 23rd place.
This time he was fast out of the box and launched himself up five places to end the first lap 18th. Finding a steady pace he moved up to 17th on Lap Seven, holding the spot all the way to the end.
"For the team I'm happy because we both made it through to Qualifying Two and then Kuba went on to Qualifying Three and got a good result.
"But for me personally I'm a bit disappointed. I know I can be fast here and I know that it isn't far away now with the Aprilia for me. I think we're just a little bit off at the moment and I feel like I'm just riding the bike and not racing it.
"I have to thank everyone at the team for all of their hard work and I just wish I could've found that feeling and got a little higher up today."
Team Technical Director Tom Larsen added: "In both races we had some kind of failure with Kuba's engine. At the moment we do not know what this was, so we are now looking into it further.
"During the second race Kuba had chatter issues, but he did a great job riding around them. We had no experience from the first race and he did the best job he could out there."
Team co-owner John Dimbylow remains positive after the team's first trip to Assen. "What a weekend!" he said.
"We have seen Kuba improve every time he went out and he gave us a fantastic result in FP3 which he backed up with our first ever front row.
"Unfortunately we had a few problems today, but both Kuba and Troy did everything they could. Troy has come so close to getting that feel he needs with the machine, and Kuba has adapted to the championship, the bike and our regulations very well.
"We may not have taken away the results we deserved today, but we are definitely in a good position for the last few rounds. We're all looking forward to seeing what we can achieve at Silverstone next weekend."
More, from a press release issued by Honda:
MCE INSURANCE BRITISH SUPERBIKE CHAMPIONSHIP
ROUND 10 SUNDAY 23 SEPTEMBER ASSEN
Weather: Sunny, warm, dry.
Temperature: Ambient 16 degrees C / Track 28 degrees C
DOUBLE PODIUM FOR LOWES AS LAVERTY PACKS THE POINTS
Alex Lowes underlined his credentials for a tilt
at the 2012 MCE Insurance British Superbike crown
with a first ever podium double finish in the
series, each time taking hard earned third
placings as the championship made its first mainland European debut at Assen.
Lowes, riding the WFR Honda, moved into fourth
place in the points standings, just above his
Samsung Honda rival Michael Laverty who had tough
day at the races, riding in almost damage
limitation style, into a pair of seventh places
as he struggled with tyre selection and wear issues.
These races formed the first of the three
Showdown rounds of the series, with the elite six
Title Fighters having mixed fortunes. Tommy
Hill, the defending champion and series leader
going into this round, was sidelined in the
opening race after a bizarre incident as he rode
his Yamaha to his grid position after the sighting lap.
A mechanic, unaware of Hill moving through, ran
into his bike, jamming on the front brake and
sending Hill tumbling over the bars, and as his
bike fell, it was damaged, leaving him with a
pit-lane start, and retirement after six laps.
Laverty, who had qualified second fastest, made
the early running, but former two times title
winner Shane Byrne eased into a second lap lead
on his Kawasaki and though Laverty briefly
regained the lead midway through the race, he was
unable to maintain the pace as he struggled with tyre wear.
Lowes meanwhile was riding determinedly, coming
through from seventh on the opening lap to be
challenging the front runners in the closing
stages and then taking Laverty to end the race in
third place as the Samsung rider was forced back into seventh place.
Byrne made the running in the opening laps of the
second race, but Laverty was running with him,
going ahead on the third lap for two laps before
Byrne regained the advantage. Laverty was again
struggling with grip issues while Lowes was again
on the ascendancy taking over in third place on
the sixth lap and after an exchange with Hill
regaining the final podium position on the last
lap. But Laverty slipped back again to seventh.
Jon Kirkham had a disappointing time, struggling
with clutch problems that left him 13th in the
opener but sidelined him late on in the second as
Josh Brookes snatched a dramatic last corner last
lap victory over Byrne to take a two point lead in the title stakes.
Brookes leads the title chase 570-568 over Byrne
with Hill 548-534 ahead of Lowes as Laverty is
fifth on 532 as they head into the penultimate
round on Sunday 30 September at Silverstone.
Honda rider quotes:
Michael Laverty (Samsung Honda):
Race positions 7th / 7th Championship position: 5th
"That was a horrible day for me that had promised
so much coming at the start of the Showdown
this is my worst day of the season. We had been
working so hard and had a good pace, but we were
always worrying about tyre choice for the races.
In the first race we used the softer compound
which had good pace, but it wore and I dropped
back down the field to seventh. For the second
race we used the harder tyre, but we couldn't get
the grip. That has put me on the back foot and I
have to come back strongly at Silverstone this
has been so frustrating as I couldn't get the result that I wanted."
Jon Kirkham (Samsung Honda):
Race positions 13th / DNF Championship position: 13th
"Disappointing time for me. We had some clutch
issue that cost me dearly. In the first race I
had made a bad start, dropping back to 18th
place, but fought back, picking up five places
but there was nothing else that I could do about
it. Then in the second race the clutch started
slipping badly and I had to pull in late on in
the race. I rode it really hard, but in reality the clutch had gone early on."
Alex Lowes (WFR Honda):
Race positions 3rd / 3rd Championship position: 4th
"I'm delighted with these results. In the first
race I started well and ran with the boys at the
front and was confident that I could stay with
them and then next time out even though I didn't
get the best of starts I was soon back in it.
Tommy Hill came past me, but I was quite fast
throughout and was able to make the move on him
at the last chicane to get third. I'm fourth, in
the Showdown and I am not here to make up the
numbers and will be doing my best in the
remaining races and just see what we can do."