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Jun 17, 2017

British Superbike: Luke Mossey Earns Pole Position At Knockhill (Updated)

Luke Mossey (12). Photo courtesy of MotorSport Vision Racing.

MCE British Superbike Championship

Knockhill Circuit, Scotland

June 17, 2017

Qualifying Results (all using Motec ECUs and Pirelli tires):

1. Luke Mossey, UK (Kaw ZX-10RR), 48.297 seconds

2. Jake Dixon, UK (Kaw ZX-10R), 48.398

3. James Ellison, UK (Yam YZF-R1), 48.464

4. Shane Byne, UK (Duc Panigale R), 48.467

5. Jason O'Halloran, Australia (Hon CBR1000RR SP2), 48.482

6. Josh Brookes, Australia (Yam YZF-R1), 48.517

7. Sylvain Guintoli, France (Suz GSX-R1000), 48.551

8. Jakub Smrz, Czech Republic (BMW S1000RR), 48.678

9. Taylor MacKenzie, UK (Suz GSX-R1000), 48.699

10. Dan Linfoot, UK (Hon CBR1000RR SP2), 48.725

11. Billy McConnell, Australia (Kaw ZX-10R), 48.755

12. Peter Hickman, UK (BMW S1000RR), 48.761

13. Bradley Ray, UK (Suz GSX-R1000), 48.802

14. Tommy Bridewell, UK (Kaw ZX-10RR), 48.833

15. Michael Laverty, UK (Yam YZF-R1), 48.865

16. Lee Jackson, UK (BMW S1000RR), 48.909

17. James Westmoreland, UK (Kaw ZX-10R), 49.300

18. John Hopkins, USA (Duc Panigale R), 49.599

19. Aaron Zanotti, UK (Yam YZF-R1), 49.891

20. Glenn Irwin, UK (Duc Panigale R), no time recorded

21. Christian Iddon, UK (BMW S1000RR), no time recorded

22. Shaun Winfield, UK (Yam YZF-R1), no time recorded

23. Leon Haslam, UK (Kaw ZX-10RR), no time recorded

More, from a press release issued by MotorSport Vision Racing:

Mossey claims pole position as Dixon debuts on the front row at Knockhill

Luke Mossey will start from pole position for the first time this season as the JG Speedfit Kawasaki set the pace in this afternoon’s Datatag Qualifying session, leading the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship pack by just 0.101s ahead of tomorrow’s races.

After a delayed start to the session the riders all took to the track for one 30 minute session, but Mossey is determined to fly the flag for the JG Speedfit Kawasaki team and he instantly set the benchmark, lapping consistently faster to remain at the top of the times.

RAF Reserves Kawasaki’s Jake Dixon was having his strongest performance of the season so far as he climbed into the top three and despite dipping down the order briefly, he fired himself into second place to score his first front row start in MCE BSB. The 21-year-old later slipped off in the final minutes of the session at the Hairpin, but was unhurt.

The front row for tomorrow’s opening race is completed by James Ellison; he was another rider to crash unhurt at the Hairpin in the early stages of the session. The McAMS Yamaha rider returned to the garage and was soon back on circuit, powering in a string of laps to complete the front row.

Defending champion Shane 'Shakey' Byrne set the fourth fastest time to head the second row of the grid; the Be Wiser Ducati rider will be joined by the leading Honda Racing Fireblade of Jason O'Halloran with Josh Brookes lining up sixth.

Sylvain Guintoli sealed his best qualifying performance of the season in seventh place for Bennetts Suzuki, just ahead of Jakub Smrz who split the Frenchman from his team-mate Taylor Mackenzie with Dan Linfoot completing the top ten.

MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship, Knockhill, Datatag Qualifying:

Luke Mossey (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) 48.297s

Jake Dixon (RAF Reserves Kawasaki) +0.101s

James Ellison (McAMS Yamaha) +0.167s

Shane Byrne (Be Wiser Ducati) +0.170s

Jason O'Halloran (Honda Racing) +0.185s

Josh Brookes (Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha) +0.220s

Sylvain Guintoli (Bennetts Suzuki) +0.254s

Jakub Smrz (Lloyd & Jones PR BMW) +0.381s

Taylor Mackenzie (Bennetts Suzuki) +0.402s

Dan Linfoot (Honda Racing) +0.428s

For more information visit

Luke Mossey

JG Speedfit Kawasaki

“I am glad to be starting from the pole position after that session. I am happy to be fastest as it rewards the team especially with Leon [Haslam] out after his crash yesterday.

"We had a problem with an engine this morning, so the boys did a great job to put a new one in for qualifying this afternoon and we were ready to go. I am feeling confident so hopefully we can come out and fight for the wins tomorrow.”

More, from a press release issued by Be Wiser Ducati:

Row Two Start For Byrne At Knockhill

Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne will head up the second row of the grid for tomorrow’s opening MCE British Superbike Championship race at Knockhill after the Be Wiser Ducati rider posted the fourth quickest time during today’s Datatag Extreme Qualifying session.

With team-mate Glenn Irwin ruled out of action after suffering a dislocated elbow and shoulder yesterday, it was left to five-times champion Byrne to fly the flag for the Penrith-based team on the factory-backed Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R and a best time of 48.390s across the three free practice sessions placed him second quickest overall going into qualifying.

However, due to track contamination, the usual three-part knockout system was discarded and instead replaced by a straight 30-minute qualifying session whereby Shakey waited until ten minutes of the session had passed before taking to the track.

Having won seven of the last nine races to be held at the Fife venue, it only took Byrne three laps to move up to third place. With ten minutes remaining, the Sittingbourne rider had been pushed back to seventh with only five minutes to go as he pitted to make adjustments but a final lap of 48.467s hauled him back up to fourth and the second row of the grid, only 0.170s adrift of pole position man Luke Mossey.

Shane Byrne: “I’m not happy with fourth that’s for sure. We came to Knockhill knowing it would be a difficult circuit for us in the dry even though I won here last year but I’m three tenths slower than what I was last year. The package is good but the nature of the track means that it throws challenges at the bike that it doesn’t always respond to. Track conditions weren’t the greatest but I really put it on the line in qualifying and whilst fourth isn’t good, it’s better to be there than crashing and that nearly happened a few times. We’ve got plenty of data to work through and the team will work through it diligently to improve it so we can be fighting at the front tomorrow.”

Phil Borley, Technical Director: “It hasn’t been a good weekend so far with Glenn’s crash yesterday, which we believe was due to a component failure and not rider error, and only fourth in qualifying for Shakey today. He had been going well in free practice but it didn’t come together in qualifying and he had to work hard to get fourth as he didn’t quite have the front end feeling he was looking for. We believe Shakey has good race pace but, at the same time, tyre life for the races is a bit of an unknown as we haven’t been able to get any real long runs done so far due to the track conditions. He hasn’t been able to push to the limit yet but we’ll make some changes to the bike for morning warm up and will hopefully be up there challenging on race day.”

More, from a press release issued by Bennetts Suzuki:

Third row qualifying for Bennetts Suzuki pairing at Knockhill

Sylvain Guintoli and Taylor Mackenzie will both start tomorrow's opening MCE British Superbike race at Knockhill from the third row of the grid, the Bennetts Suzuki pairing starting seventh and ninth respectively on their GSX-R1000s.

Guintoli spent the first free practice sessions getting to grips with the technical Knockhill circuit, in what is his first visit to the Scottish track. In today's shortened qualifying session, which was delayed due to issues of track contamination, he was sitting in sixth place and looking at a second row start, before he was bumped back to seventh in the dying seconds. However, it is the Frenchman's best qualifying of the season and he is confident of further improving his pace and position in tomorrow's races.

Mackenzie will start ninth, after setting a best lap time just over a tenth slower than his teammate, and is hopeful of two good results from tomorrow's races, as the team continue to make progress with the new GSX-R1000.

Sylvain Guintoli, "Knockhill's a very British track, but I am enjoying it a lot. I'm still learning it as there are a lot of blind corners and changes in elevation, but it's also our best qualifying of the season so it shows that we've made good progress with the bike. I'm only two tenths off pole and we're the most competitive we have been, and we're still improving and trying to make the bike better. I think we can have two good races tomorrow."

Taylor Mackenzie, "We're having a much better weekend. Right from the first session I've felt really good and the bike's working really well. We've made a big step, in all areas really, and it's the first time I feel like I can really push as hard as I want to. The procedure on my arms has made everything better as well, I didn't realise before how much I was holding on, but I come in now after each session feeling like I should. It's a massive improvement across the board really, and ninth is my best ever Superbike qualifying. Two solid top-10s tomorrow would be really good, it's tough at the front, but we're much stronger than we ever have been than I think we can do more if we get a good start and get away."

Steve Hicken, team manager, "Much better this weekend. We had a difficult start to the season but we've been working hard, and we've made a big step with the bike since Oulton. It's our best qualifying of the season, and we have to remember Sylvain's not been here before; while Knockhill's short, it's quite difficult to learn. It's competitive out there but hopefully, with Sylvain still learning and the bike always improving, we can get away with the front group and have two good races.

"Taylor's having a good weekend too. We've really improved things on his side of the garage, and he's learning more and more all the time about the bike and the electronics. Two top-10 finishes for him would be great after the inconsistent start to the year, but I think there's definitely the potential there for more."

Superbike qualifying result: 1. Luke Mossey, 2. Jake Dixon, 3. James Ellison, 7. Sylvain Guintoli, 9. Taylor Mackenzie