Josh Brookes finished off the 2013 British Superbike season with a dominant hat-trick of wins from two pole positions at Brands Hatch on his Tyco Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Brookes followed up his win on Saturday with one of the greatest victories witnessed at a Brands Hatch BSB event, coming from 16 seconds behind to win Sunday’s opening encounter.
Brookes then went on to take a lights-to-flag third race win from pole position, securing him third place in this year’s championship on the final day of racing for 2013. His young team-mate PJ Jacobsen was fifth in the opening BSB race and retired from Sunday’s second race with visor problems in the wet conditions, which was disappointing for the 20-year-old who qualified alongside Brookes on the front-row in second place.
Taylor Mackenzie had a storming start in Sunday’s British Supersport race and, having briefly led his first race in the class, he was comfortably mixing it at the front. Unfortunately the conditions caught him out and he slid off unhurt, but showed great promise all day on the Tyco Suzuki GSX-R600.
“My attitude was that the championship was out of our hands going into Brands, so I went into the weekend wanting to finish the year on a high. I wanted to try and elevate the image of the team and the spirit of the mechanics and crew as we’ve had a couple of tough weekends. There was no game plan, I just wanted to do my best for the team and all our sponsors, so two pole positions and three wins on the Tyco Suzuki was ideal. I want to thank the team and everyone involved for their support this year. We’ve finished the year on a high going into the off-season and a long winter away from racing so I’m pretty happy.”
“The weekend wasn’t so bad for me with some good performances but the final race made me pretty mad when my visor steamed up and I couldn’t see. It’s not a great way to end the year but I just want to thank Philip and the team for everything, as they’ve done a great job and I’ve really enjoyed riding the Tyco Suzuki GSX-R1000.”
“I was second in warm up on Sunday morning which gave confidence for the race and the plan was to finish the season and have a good dig. I got a really good start and went round the outside of O’Halloran and when I got to the front, I felt really comfortable in second place. Even when Cooper was on the front I felt comfortable and was confident I could go with him, but I just out-braked myself a little bit. It was damp off line and I lost the front, but all-in-all it’s been a good weekend. I’ve really enjoyed riding the GSX-R600 this season in a year when the Supersport class has been really tough. Hopefully we can do it all again next year.”
Philip Neill – Team Manager:
“What a way to end our season. The BSB Championship really does present the most exciting racing and today was no different. Josh once again proved his capability by mastering the damp conditions and the GSX-R1000 worked perfectly throughout the weekend. It is of course a shame that our championship hopes where realistically over before we reached Brands; however, our first BSB treble victory certainly leaves us feeling positive.
“PJ had another solid weekend and I’m sure if he hadn’t suffered with a misted visor in race three he would have challenged for a podium-finish after starting from second place on the grid. Again Taylor enjoyed a largely positive weekend even though he slipped-off in the second race. Unfortunately these things happen, but it was nice to see Taylor have a go and actually take the race lead briefly on the GSX-R600.
“I would like to take the opportunity to thank each and every member of our team and also our sponsors, Tyco Security Products, Suzuki and all our loyal partners for their continued support. I would also like to congratulate former TAS Racing team member Tom Sykes on becoming World Superbike Champion today.”
British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, Race 1:
1. Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki)
2. Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) +0.968s
3. Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +5.709s
4. Josh Waters (Halsall Racing Kawasaki) +16.821s
5. PJ Jacobsen (Tyco Suzuki) +22.890s
6. Tommy Bridewell (Milwaukee Yamaha) +24.345s
7. Chris Walker (Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki) +25.538s
8. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +27.731s
9. Lee Costello (Halsall Racing Kawasaki) +29.917s
10. Michael Rutter (Bathams Honda) +30.394s
British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, Race 2:
1. Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki)
2. Lee Costello (Halsall Racing Kawasaki) +0.196s
3. James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) +0.728s
4. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +9.127s
5. Chris Walker (Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki) +16.826s
6. PJ Jacobsen (Tyco Suzuki) +17.198s
7. Dan Linfoot (Lloyds British GBmoto Honda) +30.805s
8. Jon Kirkham (Buildbase BMW) +41.399s
9. Jakub Smrz (Padgetts Honda) +48.080s
10. Freddy Foray (Samsung Honda) +51.836s
British Superbike Championship, Brands Hatch, Race 3:
1. Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki)
2. Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) +1.185s
3. Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +2.587s
4. Tommy Bridewell (Halsall Racing Kawasaki) +4.869s
5. James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) +13.521s
6. Jon Kirkham (Buildbase BMW) +16.282s
7. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +16.282s
8. Josh Waters (Halsall Racing Kawasaki) +17.186s
9. Chris Walker (Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki) +17.387s
10. Dan Linfoot (Lloyds British GBmoto Honda) +20.027s
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship final standings:
1. Alex Lowes (Samsung Honda) 643
2. Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 636
3. Josh Brookes (Tyco Suzuki) 621
4. James Ellison (Milwaukee Yamaha) 589
5. James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) 564
6. Ryuichi Kiyonari (Samsung Honda) 522
More, from a press release issued by SMT Racing:
SMT Racing end British Championship season with triple race victory
SMT Racing finished the 2013 season exactly as they started as Adam Jenkinson and Tim and Tristan Reeves swept to a triple race victory at Brands Hatch but whilst the Reeves brothers had already wrapped up the Eastern Airways British Sidecar Championship, Jenkinson had to settle for second overall in the Pirelli National 1000cc Superstock Championship
The Knutsford rider came into the meeting 20 points adrift of season long rival Hudson Kennaugh, the South African needing only a tenth place to take the title. However, rain made conditions treacherous although a good start from the front row of the grid saw Adam immediately slot into second place. He took the lead for the first time a lap later but, for the remainder of the 14-lap race, it was tight with Adam, Tristan Palmer and Danny Johnson contesting the win. Positions changed hands regularly but Adam regained the lead on the final lap and took the chequered flag for his third win of the season.
However, Kennaugh rode a sensible race to finish seventh and take the title on 177 points, four more than Adam who ended the year with three wins and six podiums.
Speaking later, Adam said; “I did all I could today and whilst it’s disappointing to see the title slip from our grasp in the final third of the season, I’m delighted to take the win today and end the season on a high. The crash at Cadwell in August was what really affected us and I lost valuable points at a really crucial part of the year whilst illness at Silverstone also affected my performance. Second overall in the Championship though is something both the team and myself can be proud of and I’d like to thank everyone for all their support this year.”
The Reeves brothers also had their two races severely affected by the weather with the opening race of the weekend being particularly treacherous. A number of teams crashed out but Tim and Tristan kept their heads immaculately and with some precision sidecar driving, they came home over six seconds clear of Ben Holland/Lee Watson. The second race again saw a variety of tyre choices made by the crews and whilst Tim opted for full slicks in the damp weather, Andy Peach/Charlie Richardson chose intermediates and there was little to choose between the two pairings after a safety car period saw the pack bunch up.
With a dry line appearing, straying slightly off it spelt a distinct lack of grip for Tim and Tristan but they were determined not to let Peach and Richardson get the better of them and they edged them out by 0.669s for their 16th win out of 18 races contested. Indeed, their dominance of the series could be seen in the final standings as their tally of 490 points saw them end the season 168 points clear of Peach/Richardson with Holland/Watson a further sixty points back.
Looking back at the team’s highly successful season, SMT Racing’s owner Robin Croft added: "I couldn't have asked for a better end to the season! After the obvious disappointment of Silverstone, Adam came out of the blocks knowing what he had to do and won the race in extremely tricky conditions and under a lot of pressure. He withstood the pressure from Danny and Tristan to win the race but with Kennaugh finishing seventh, we just fell short of the title by four points. We're naturally disappointed but also extremely proud of Adam for the way he rode."
"Tim and Tristan were again exemplary in what were also very difficult conditions and swept to another emphatic double. We started the season with three race victories and ended the season with three race victories so I couldn't ask for more. I'd like to thank Tim and Tristan and Adam for how they've ridden and conducted themselves all year and also thank Alec, Fred and Steve for all their hard work and for making the season what it was."
The team now look forward to the Macau Grand Prix where Michael Rutter will be aiming to give them their second successive victory. The meeting takes place on November 13-16.
More, from a press release issued by Quattro Plant Kawasaki:
Walker ensures Quattro Plant Kawasaki’s BSB season ends on a high
Despite tricky conditions throughout the weekend at Brands Hatch, Chris Walker ensured the 2013 British Superbike Championship season ended on a high note for both himself and the Quattro Plant Kawasaki team with a trio of top ten finishes around the demanding Kent venue.
With rain showers making the ‘Triple Header’ final round extremely difficult for all concerned, Chris’ qualifying position of 15th wasn’t a true reflection of his pace and this could immediately be seen during Saturday’s 18-lap race. A trademark flying start saw the Nottinghamshire rider move into seventh place at the end of the opening lap and for the remainder of the race he was well in contention for a top five result. However, whilst he overhauled Lee Costello at one third race distance, Tommy Bridewell got the better of him shortly after and he had to settle for seventh place.
Sunday’s two 20-lap races saw even more rain fall but with far better starting positions, the result of his rapid laps in the wet races, Chris was able to challenge even further. Eighth at the start of the day’s first race, he was able to steadily move forward and, aided by the third fastest lap of the race, he took a brilliant fifth place at the chequered flag to equal his best result of the season. It meant he started the final race of the season from the front row and hopeful of at least matching his fifth place, something that he looked like he’d achieve until a major slide at Graham Hill Bend on lap seven forced him onto the soaking wet grass and dropped him down the order. In true ‘Stalker’ style, he fought back valiantly and was duly rewarded with ninth place at the end of an extremely challenging race.
With 27 points taken from the three races, it saw Chris end the year with a strong total of 168 points for tenth place overall in the Championship and fourth in the Rider's Cup.
For team-mate Barry Burrell, the weekend proved to be a much more different prospect and he struggled to get comfortable with the wet weather throughout all three days of the meeting. The Bishop Auckland rider battled hard to add some points to his Championship but ultimately had to give best to the conditions, a lack of grip and good set-up causing him to retire from all three races.
Pete Extance, Team Manager: "It was a great way to end the 2013 BSB Championship and for Chris to end the year with three, well-deserved top ten finishes, a front row start and 10th overall in the Championship is testament to all concerned. Sadly, Barry struggled with the conditions all weekend but did a great job since he joined the team in August. Congratulations to Alex Lowes and to MSVR for a fantastic Championship and a big thanks to all of our sponsors. Roll on 2014!"
More, from a press release issued by Halsall Racing:
Podium joy for Costello and the Halsall Racing Kawasaki team
THE Bolton-based Halsall Racing Kawasaki team ended the 2013 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship on a high with rider Lee Costello taking a second place in Sunday’s first race at Brands Hatch.
Costello just narrowly missed out on his first BSB win after an epic battle at the Kent track, while Australian team-mate Josh Waters had a strong weekend and has regained his confidence after a tough rookie season.
The weekend got off to a flying start for the duo as they quickly got to grips with the wet track during Saturday’s qualifying session, both making it through to Qualifying Three and both subsequently qualifying on the second row, with Josh fourth and Lee sixth.
Both riders made good starts, with Waters picking up a place in the first couple of corners and then making a move past Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne into second on Lap Two. But Byrne soon took it back and a lap later he was passed by Alex Lowes and pushed back to fourth where he remained all the way to the flag. Costello also enjoyed a great race as he put up a strong fight to cross the line ninth.
As a result of their laps in Saturday’s race, Josh lined-up seventh and Lee 14th for Sunday’s first race. Earlier heavy showers had dried up and the race was to be a gamble of tyre choice, with Josh opting for dry rubber while Lee went for wets.
The wet choice turned out to be the one, as the Bolton rider made a searing start, scything his way through and up to third by the second lap. Sitting in third for a couple of laps, he passed James Westmoreland and James Ellison to take the lead on Lap Five. Ellison passed him on Lap 15 but Costello took it back a lap later. From here he led all the way until the final corner when he was pipped by a flying Josh Brookes and took second place, his best result of the year and his first ever British Superbike podium.
Waters meanwhile was left frustrated by his tyre choice at the start when he was unable to get any grip, but as the track dried was starting to make his way back through when he crashed out on Lap Nine.
The heavy rain returned for the final race and this time the whole grid was out on wets, with Lee starting from seventh and Josh from 13th. This time it was Josh who got the best start, crossing the line seventh at the end of the opening lap while Lee dropped back to 11th.
Josh spent most of the race battling around sixth and seventh place, and although he made his way through to fifth at one point, he was unlucky to lose out in the final two laps and ended the race eighth. Lee meanwhile struggled to fight back from a slow start and crossed the line 13th.
Lee Costello: “If anyone had said to me earlier this weekend that I’d be on the podium I’d have laughed them out of the paddock. But that race was just perfect. When I realised most people were on intermediate tyres and I was on wets I thought that was it, I thought the job was over. I just knew I had to get a good start and once I got out in front I pushed and pushed as hard as I could. It was a great race, and while I wished I could’ve held onto the lead that bit longer I’m thrilled with this result. I’ve got to thank Martin and everyone in the team who have helped me get here today and hopefully this will be the start of many more podiums in the future.”
Josh Waters: “This has been quite a good weekend for me, I’m feeling pretty happy right now. Firstly it was good for me to get into Qualifying Three and then we had a really good first race on Saturday. Things didn’t go quite to plan in the second race because I took a gamble with tyres and it was the wrong one. I was on slick tyres on a drying track so when I hit a patch of water the bike just went. The last race wasn’t too bad either, but I struggled a bit with grip and ended up dropping a few places. At the end of the weekend I’m happy, I’m starting to feel confident again and after the tough season I’ve had, this has been the perfect way to end the year.”
Martin Halsall Team Owner: “The whole weekend has just been mega, and the highlight was definitely that second race, it was just epic. Qualifying was good and in Saturday’s race Josh rode really well – it was good to see him up there enjoying himself and getting a solid fourth place. Then we had Race Two and Lee was just amazing. I’ve always said to Lee this was a long season and would be a big learning curve, so for him to end it with a second is fantastic. With Lee’s progress over the year and to see how well Josh has come on, I couldn’t ask for more. It’s been phenomenal.”
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship Brands Hatch Race 1
1. Josh Brookes, Suzuki
2. Alex Lowes, Honda
3. Shane Byrne, Kawasaki
4. Josh Waters, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
5. PJ Jacobsen, Suzuki
6. Tommy Bridewell, Yamaha
9. Lee Costello, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship Brands Hatch Race 2
1. Josh Brookes, Suzuki
2. Lee Costello, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
3. James Ellison, Yamaha
4. James Westmoreland, BMW
5. Chris Walker, Kawasaki
6. PJ Jacobsen, Suzuki
DNF: Josh Waters, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship Brands Hatch Race 3
1. Josh Brookes, Suzuki
2. Alex Lowes, Honda
3. Shane Byrne, Kawasaki
4. Tommy Bridewell, Yamaha
5. James Ellison, Yamaha
6. Jon Kirkham, BMW
8. Josh Waters, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
13. Lee Costello, Halsall Racing Kawasaki
MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship Brands Hatch Championship Points
1. Alex Lowes, 643
2. Shane Byrne, 636
3. Josh Brookes, 621
4. James Ellison, 589
5. James Westmoreland, 564
6. Ryuichi Kiyonari, 522
13. Josh Waters, 96
19. Lee Costello, 48
More, from a press release issued by Triumph Triple Challenge Press Office:
Scott Pitchers claims the Triumph Triple Challenge Cup Championship
Scott Pitchers ends the season with an impressive triple headed win at Brands Hatch. Coming first in the Triumph Triple Challenge (TTC) race meant he was also Cup class winner and took the Cup championship with a two and a half points lead over Dan Helyer.
Pitchers started third on the grid, behind Freddy Pett and Tom Ward who was on pole. It wasn’t an easy race as he was battling Helyer the entire time and didn't manage to pass Ward until five laps in. By the end of the first lap it looked as if Ward would run away with it as he had already pulled out a sizeable lead, but some serious racing from the two Cup class riders meant they caught him by the third lap.
Laps five and six saw the race change dramatically as Pitchers was right on Ward’s tail followed very closely by Helyer. Pitchers made the pass and Helyer followed him. It was clear that Pitchers had the pace on Helyer on the straight, but the rider from Eastbourne made the most of the corners to close the gap. Helyer was pushing hard and told us afterwards that he nearly came off numerous times: “I rode my heart out and had three or four near crashes but I was prepared to crash to try and win the championship”.
On the penultimate lap, Helyer had possibly the worst of his near crashes and enabled Pitchers to extend his lead enough that Helyer was unable to challenge for first again. Pitchers had a comfortable lead for the final lap, Helyer crossed the line second with Chris Northover third. Pitchers and Helyer also secured first and second in the Cup class with Jesse Jones third.
This was Pitchers' first ever race win in the TTC and it has been his main goal all season, we asked him whether he was finally happy:
“Yeah and I did it on the last one! I am super charged!”. We also asked him how he felt about his triple headed win today, “Yeah it’s a good feeling! I’m going to have to put up a new shelf at home because I’ve run out of room now for the trophies!”
Helyer also commented: “I am happy, but also disappointed at the end of the day. I missed out by two and a half points; it was a great ride by Scott. Congratulations to him, and hopefully next year I will come back a bit stronger!”
Chris Northover who is riding as a wild card rider for Bike World commented: “I am delighted! It was really good of Bike World and Triumph to give me a chance to come and do this press ride for Superbike magazine. It has been an awesome, awesome day! Top respect to the Triple Challenge boys they are so fast, I think everyone was having moments at every corner so it was a really awesome race!”
Further down the standings, number 66 Freddy Pett was just holding off Phil Atkinson as the pair were fighting for their positions in the championship. Pett finished to claim fifth in the race and second in the overall championship followed by Atkinson third overall points.
The final race of the season certainly did not disappoint, for more information on next season go to www.triumphtriplechallenge.com, find Triumph Triple Challenge on Facebook or follow @TriumphTC on twitter.
More, from a press release issued by Dainese:
TOM SYKES CROWNED WORLD SUPERBIKE CHAMPION
Dainese’s Tom Sykes was this weekend crowned World Superbike champion at the last round at Jerez, Spain.
Going into the final round Sykes knew that he didn’t need a race victory to secure the title. In race one he rode to a solid third place giving him a large enough advantage to make his championship win safe. Sykes received his trophy and was awarded the World Championship title, still with the second 21-lap race to complete.
Gathering his emotions Sykes led for 13-laps but eventually crossed the line in second place, with a final championship advantage of 23-points. Not only did the Dainese rider score a new Jerez lap recorded, but he led for 255-laps over the whole season – more than twice the total of the next best rider.
Dainese would like to extend its thanks and sincere congratulations to Tom for sharing his success in 2013 and World Championship status with Dainese.
Well done Tom!
More, from a press release issued by Yamaha Racing:
The Titles Keep Coming as the Yamaha YZF-R6 Rules Supreme
Mar-Train Yamaha YZF-R6 rider Stuart Easton yesterday wrapped up the highly competitive British Supersport Championship at the final round in Brands Hatch. The Scottish rider’s title glory came after a drama filled race, re-started when rain compromised the opening laps.
Easton scored an impressive ten race victories and a total of 17 podiums through the season on his R6 to take 422 championship points, 13 clear of closest rival Alastair Seeley.
The title comes just two weeks after British rider Sam Lowes took his Yakhnich Yamaha YZF-R6 to World Supersport title glory at the penultimate round of the championship in Magny Cours. Having taken the title Lowes kept the pressure on last weekend for the final round, taking victory in Jerez with his sixth win of the season yesterday to wrap up the year in style.
The two wins are just part of the Yamaha YZF-R6 story of supremacy in 2013, the World Supersport and British Supersport titles added to an impressive haul of global honours. The 2013 AMA Daytona Sportbike Championship in the USA was dominated by R6 rider Cameron Beaubier who won 12 of the 13 races, including the Daytona 200, on his Yamaha.
On the other side of the world in Australia Daniel Falzon claimed his second consecutive 2013 ASBK Supersport Championship on the 9th October in Phillip Island, keeping the Yamaha on top down under.
Back in Europe and the story was the same in France. Yamaha France’s Dark Dog Academy Yamaha rider Mathieu Gines completed a storming season to take title honours, an impressive 59 points clear of his closest rival Valentin Debise. Across the borders in Germany Kevin Wahr was doing the same, taking nine race wins to secure the IDM German Supersport Championship title on his R6.
You can downloads high resolution images of Stuart Easton, Sam Lowes and many other Yamaha Racing riders in action at www.yamaha-racing.com
More, from a press release issued by Bel-Ray:
Bel-Ray Racer Aleix Espargaro Clinches CRT Title at Australia
Teammate Jordi Torres finishes on podium in Moto2 class action.
FARMINGDALE, N.J. ? Round 16 of the 2013 World Championship series took place at Phillip Island Circuit this past weekend. One of the most picturesque tracks in the series, this event takes place on Phillip Island 150 km south of Melbourne, Australia. The track is well liked by racers and fans alike, as it offers amazing views and high-speed sections.
The entire track has been resurfaced recently, resulting in a shortened race distance and a required pit stop to avoid tire failure due to the abrasive circuit.
Bel-Ray-backed Aleix Espargaro has consistently been the top CRT racer all season, and he came to Phillip Island needing only to finish ahead of rival Colin Edwards to wrap up his second consecutive CRT championship. An 11th place finish just behind his teammate Randy DePuniet was all that the likable Spaniard needed to clinch the title with two rounds remaining.
“I feel very happy; today we got our reward for a year of excellent results,” said Espargaro following the event. “We have always been close to the factory bikes and with the few points we usually pick up, to win the CRT championship with two races to go means that we have done things very well. This title is a huge prize for the team and for me. Since I’ve joined the POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar Team, I have never stopped growing as a rider. I have had the best parts and bike around in the CRT class, and we have been the complete package."
Teammate Randy DePuniet experienced his 250th career Grand Prix and was rewarded with the top CRT for the event, with a solid 10th place finish.
“I am very happy with this result,” said DePuniet. “This weekend, we found a great setup that allowed me to be aggressive in the race. I had a nice battle with three Ducati riders and overtook them a few times, but they got me back on the straights. It’s been a while since I enjoyed myself so much. Both the team and I deserved a result like this. Also, today I celebrated my 250th GP, and I think it’s a good gift for that. Performing at this level leaves us confident for the final two races of the year.”
The Moto2 class was also shortened due to the safety concerns about premature tire wear. Bel-Ray racers Jordi Torres and Nico Terol both put their Aspar machines inside the top 10, with Terol in 9th place and Torres on the podium in 3rd place. Starting from the front row, Torres stayed with the lead group on the way to the fifth podium of the season for the Aspar team.
“I am very happy, because it ended up being a complete weekend here at Phillip Island,” said Torres. “We managed to close out with a magnificent podium. It’s my first full season in Moto2; I am very proud to be getting podiums. We are doing a fabulous job and hopefully we will be rewarded for this. It shows that we are finding our place in class.”
Terol was also satisfied with the results of the weekend.
“The wind made it difficult to ride,” said Terol. “I started well and early on I kept in the leading group. Afterwards, I dropped off a bit and tried to recover but suddenly Pasini and Simón crashed behind me. Upon hearing the noise, I eased off the gas slightly. That made me lose a few more metres, and eventually I ended up losing contact completely with the leading group. It was a tough weekend at a track where I suffered last year. I’m happy, because both yesterday and today our feeling was great.”
Bel-Ray’s entry in Moto3 competition, Jonas Folger, did everything well at Phillip Island, but bad luck kept him off the podium he deserved. Starting second on the grid, he started calm as part of the leading group until he attempted to pull away on lap seven. After not getting away, he dropped back in the group and awaited his moment. The moment came at the start of the final lap, when he passed two riders and took the lead, but four corners later he was taken off-line by another rider and lost his chance for the podium. Folger eventually finished in 6th place.
"Today, I felt very solid throughout the race thanks to a great setup. When I moved to the head of the group I pushed hard but when I saw I couldn’t escape I decided to ride calmly, saving my tyres at the back of the pack. Towards the end of the race, I again ascended positions, felt good, and was convinced I could fight for the podium today. I knew it was very important to be in a good spot on the last lap, so at the end of the straight I overtook Salom and Viñales to take the lead. Just then, on a fast corner, Marquez overtook me by taking advantage of my slipstream. I tried to hold position and wait for my chance again, but suddenly I saw that Salom went in too hot for a corner, touching me and forcing me to go to the outside. I had to lift the bike up instinctively because I almost crashed and was passed by several riders. I didn’t have time to catch the group back up and try to get to the podium spots. It’s a shame to end the weekend like this because we had done a great job. These things happen when you compete, and I hope for better luck in Japan.”
The series continues this weekend in Japan at the Twin Ring Motegi Circuit for the AirAsia Grand Prix of Japan.
To learn more about Bel-Ray specialty powersports lubricants, visit www.belray.com/powersports or call (732) 938-2421.
Follow Bel-Ray racers all season long at www.belray.com/powersports
More, from a press release issued by Team WD-40:
CHAMPAGNE CORKS POP AT BRANDS HATCH FOR TEAM WD-40
The corks were finally popped at Brands Hatch, as Team WD-40 celebrated a championship winning debut season.
While the wet weather denied Monster Energy Motostar champion Joe Francis a season ending win, the team were presented with the two championship trophies to mark a brilliant 2013.
The 15-year-old, from Backford near Chester, was very unlucky to slide off on the final lap of the rain-soaked track, especially as he was leading the last race of the season.
In the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 race, Tommy Aquino once again finished in the points while Jon Railton climbed an incredible ten places from his grid position to finish just outside the points.
It means that Californian Aquino finishes his debut season in seventh place in the championship, a remarkable achievement considering he’d never raced in the UK before this year or on a 1000cc bike.
The qualifying session was one of the closest of the season, with just one second separating the top 20 riders in the first qualifying session.
Tommy Aquino was 14th while Jon Railton was 34th, but only two seconds off pole.
The dry conditions of first qualifying proved to be the best of the weekend, as second qualifying was dictated by the autumnal weather and meant grid positions remained unchanged.
Heavy overnight showers led to a wet track for the race, which was unusually in that it took place in mid-morning, and the conditions proved tricky for all riders.
With the track slowly drying throughout the race Aquino stayed out of trouble at the start and like most riders was in a constant battle with the conditions but more so than the other bikes.
He stuck to his task and despite a few wobbly moments brought the bike home in the points, in 14th place.
It meant he finished his debut season in 7th place in the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 championship, not bad for a rider who had never ridden a 1000cc bike or raced at any UK track before this year, and never in the rain.
During a purple spell in mid-season Aquino collected his first win, at Cadwell Park, after two podiums in the preceding races at Brands Hatch and Oulton Park.
He said: “Today was very slippy, which made it tricky trying to overtake as the conditions at the main passing points changed from one lap to the next.
“This season has been a big learning for me and I’m very grateful for everyone at Team WD-40 for putting their faith in me.
“I knew I could push for a podium as the season went on, but to get that win at Cadwell Park was a very special moment and I’ll remember it for a long time.
“Being part of Team WD-40 has been exciting, rewarding and has given me plenty of lessons in just how much the British weather affects a race track.
“I’ve experienced snow, rain, freezing cold and sweltering heat in just six months of racing, which I never thought about when I came over to the UK in April.
“Although I’m looking forward to the winter break, I’m also itching to get back racing in 2014.”
His team mate, Jon Railton from Grafham, had a good start from the eleventh row of the grid and then set about making the most of the difficult conditions which caused a number of riders in front of him to struggle.
The 22-year-old gained a place on almost every lap to finish in 24th position and complete a season that has been hit by injury.
“The track conditions weren’t the best and at times it was a challenge to keep the bike upright,” said Railton.
“I could see everyone around me having the same problems so I focused on picking off one bike at a time and see where that got me.
“The season has been a rollercoaster and I’m disappointed that a few injuries meant I couldn’t deliver my best form.
“Being part of Team WD-40 has been brilliant though and I’m delighted that Joe is champion and Tommy had such a good debut season in the UK.”
Francis almost celebrated winning the Monster Energy Motostar and Moto 3 titles with a win in a race that was initially stopped because of the torrential rain.
He led the restart after lap two, before a nail-biting battle with Joe Irving saw Francis head for victory before he slid off at Paddock Hill on the final lap.
But such has been his dominance of the championship that this was his first non-finish of the season and only the second time he has not finished on the podium.
“I’m really disappointed to finish the season with a DNF (did not finish), but overall it’s been a fantastic season,” said Francis.
“The track was very wet but I’d not had a problem in the race with sliding before the last lap and the line I took was the same as previous laps, so I guess it was just unlucky that the bike gave way.
“I couldn’t have won the championship without everyone from Team WD-40, because they prepared the bike perfectly for me at every race.
“To win both championships is a great feeling and it hasn’t quite sunk in yet.
“I have to thank Team WD-40, my family and friends for supporting me all year and being the difference between winning a championship and not winning anything.”
Brent Gladwin, Team WD-40’s principal, said: “We’ve had a brilliant season, which has been capped by Joe winning the Monster Energy Motostar championship.
“He has ridden superbly all season and the last few races he’s performed like a true champion, making sure he gets points for the championship rather than push for a race win.
“At Brands Hatch he was just unlucky that he slid off on the final lap, because he was going to end the season in style with a win. Joe has delivered what we set out at the start of the season and he is a fully deserving double champion.
“He has done so with the support of his mechanics, Tom and Danny, without whom he wouldn’t have had the bike to compete. It’s been a long season, but to end it with two championships trophies is brilliant.
“Tommy has come over to the UK, never raced on any of the tracks here before or even on a 1000cc bike, yet he’s delivered a magnificent performance throughout the season.
“This weekend the weather conditions dictated much of the racing and he did well to finish in the points yet again. To finish the season in seventh place in the championship is brilliant and he should be very proud of himself. The experience he’s gained this season is invaluable and he can now go back to a warm and sunny California for a well-deserved rest.
“For Jon the season has also given him new experiences, which unfortunately was mainly how to deal with persistent injuries. He’s put in some good performances though and there’s certainly something to build on for 2014.”
David Whittome, Head of Marketing for team sponsors WD-40 Company Limited, said: “While the rain tried to spoil the end of season races, it failed to dampen the deserved celebrations of the debut season for Team WD-40. It’s been a quite brilliant season and ended with a great double championship for Joe, while Tommy claimed an excellent championship finish and Jon showed good promise despite injuries.
“It’s been a tough season but everyone associated with Team WD-40 can be very proud of the effort they put in. Not many teams can claim a double championship, never mind in the inaugural season.”
“Everyone at WD-40 Company is delighted for the team and we’re already looking forward to 2014
Stauff UK, Cargolink Express, L&A Reinforcements, Carrino access flooring, The Air Con Experts, F&G Commercials, Bennetts Motorcycle Insurance, Kent Holiday Cottages, RS Components, 3 Squared, Signsxtra
Kawasaki, Scorpion Red Power, Dynojet UK, Swinton Motorcycles, R&G, PPG Paint, Goodridge, Pipercross, Solo Motorcycle products, Super B, MG Competition, STIHL, Geo Technology, Sigma
More, from a press release issued by Motorsport Vision:
EASTON CELEBRATES SECOND SUPERSPORT TITLE AT BRANDS HATCH
Stuart Easton emerged victorious from Brands Hatch last weekend as the Martrain Yamaha rider secured a second Motorpoint British Supersport Championship title following a season-long battle with fierce rival Alastair Seeley.
Easton came into the final race of the season just four points ahead of Gearlink Kawasaki’s Seeley with the pair knowing that they needed to finish ahead to lift the crown; a red flagged final race saw Easton score his tenth victory of the season and with it the title. Oxford TAG Triumph’s Richard Cooper returned to the podium in second place splitting the rivals with Seeley ending his campaign with a strong third place.
Easton said: “It has been a nervous couple of days over the weekend and if I’m honest I wasn’t pleased with my performance in the first race when I finished eleventh. Everyone was working out the stats but I knew if I won the race then I would be the champion – it was a simple as that. The conditions were far from ideal and a red flag is not the way anyone wants to see the season end, but I was in front when it mattered and I’m delighted to be 2013 British Supersport Champion. The whole Mar-Train crew have been fantastic all year and I’ll be sad to leave here, but we will enjoy being British Supersport champions.”
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship, sprint race:
1. Richard Cooper (Oxford TAG Triumph)
2. Alastair Seeley (Gearlink Kawasaki) +3.707s
3. Luke Jones (T3 Triumph) +5.663s
4. Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph) +6.069s
5. Jason O'Halloran (Samsung Honda) +6.114s
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship - final race
1. Stuart Easton (Martrain Yamaha)
2. Richard Cooper (Oxford TAG Triumph) +0.157s
3. Alastair Seeley (Gearlink Kawasaki) +0.322s
4. Glen Richards (Smiths Triumph) +0.548s
5. Glen Irwin (CF Yamaha) +14.758s
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship - final standings
1. Stuart Easton (Martrain Yamaha) 422
2. Alastair Seeley (Gearlink Kawasaki) 409
3. Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph) 327
4. Ben Wilson (Gearlink Kawasaki) 303
5. Graeme Gowland (Appleyard Macadam Doodson Yamaha) 245
For more information please visit www.britishsuperbike.com
More, from a press release issued by Team Honda Racing:
A Podium Finish for Team Honda Racing at 2013 MotoGP Event
A superb end to the year for Superbike rookie, #34 Josh Hook as he takes 3rd overall in the Superbike Support Category at the 2013 Tissot Australian Motorcycle Grandprix over the weekend.
The final event on the calendar for Team Honda Racing provided no end of excitement for the team and spectators alike with some thrilling on-track battles at the front of the field, including one between the Honda team mates Hook and #27 Jamie Stauffer.
Stauffer and Hook qualified well on Friday with Stauffer starting on the front row in P3 and Hook in P5. The Honda riders showed good pace in Superbike Race 1, but some bike setting issues proved difficult to overcome and Stauffer finished in 4th place with team mate Hook in 5th.
Race 2 told a different tale after the team made changes to the CBR1000RRs on Friday afternoon, providing Stauffer and Hook with much better feel in the bike and the difference was clear. The lap times for the top five riders were extremely fast. Both Hook and Stauffer found themselves in a battle for 2nd place, young Hook displaying some very bold manoeuvers and the pure desire to get on the podium.
The podium was indeed where Hook found himself, taking 3rd place in Race 2 with a fastest lap time of 1:32.879 sec, just .037 sec off the fastest lap of the race. Team mate, Stauffer took 4th place right behind Hook with a fastest lap time of 1:32.870 sec. Just 1.638 sec separated 1st to 4th place and a mere .08 sec separated 2nd to 4th place as they crossed the finish line.
The third and final race in the Superbike Support Category was held on Sunday morning and once again the Honda CBR1000RR of Hook was battling for a podium position. The young rider from Taree took his second podium of the event when he crossed the finish line at the chequered flag in 3rd place with Stauffer in 5th.
Hook was extremely happy to take 3rd place overall for the Superbike Support races and enjoyed racing in front of the large international crowd, “It was great to have the opportunity to race at Phillip Island again with such a huge crowd and the atmosphere was just amazing. I couldn’t be happier to finish the MotoGP event with a 3rd overall in Superbikes and I would like to thank the team for their efforts as they always put in 100%. It was terrific to see so many people there to support the domestic teams and riders and particularly our sponsors who made the journey to the island to encourage us. A big thank you to Honda Australia also for the fantastic support they provide throughout the season.”
Overall for the MotoGP event, Stauffer finished in 5th place, saying “I enjoyed the MotoGP event very much although I’m a bit disappointed with not finishing on the podium. My pace was good over the weekend, but sometimes it just doesn’t happen. I struggled with front end grip a bit early on and we did get on top of that, but the stars just didn’t align for me this weekend to finish on the podium. Still, there were some great battles on track and it was a terrific event. I would like to thank the team for all their hard work and the sponsors for all their support throughout the year."
The MotoGP event, being the largest on the calendar for Team Honda Racing is always an exciting one and this year’s event was no exception. Many of the Team Honda Racing sponsors attended the event with Doric Products enjoying the Honda VIP facility on the Gardner Straight, right there to cheer on the domestic and international teams alike. Also at Phillip Island during the weekend were guests from, AWS Vantage, Western Freight Management, and Motobatt.
Paul Free was pleased to see so many of the team partners there, saying “It really is a boost to the team to have our team partners taking part and making the most of the activities over the weekend. The MotoGP event is the largest on our calendar definitely one that we enjoy immensely. The crowds are huge, the racing is always thrilling and I am always proud to show what we have collectively created in Team Honda Racing. I would like to thank Honda Australia once again for their fantastic support and indeed all our team partners. I am really pleased to come away from the MotoGP with a podium position in the Superbike Support Category and cannot speak highly enough of our team. Jamie and Josh both raced well this weekend and I couldn’t be more proud of young Josh’s achievement to get a podium position here at the GP in his rookie year on the Superbike. The determination that he showed in the races is precisely what I want to see on track and he should be very proud of his efforts this weekend. Well done to both Josh and Jamie who both fought hard all weekend and did the team proud.”
With racing over for the year, Team Honda Racing HQ at Motologic is now abuzz with preparations for the 2014 racing season. There is much to be done before the next campaign and Team Honda Racing looks forward to the new year and a fresh opportunity to challenge for the Australian Superbike Championship Title.
More, from a press release issued by Team Suzuki News Service:
Australian Superbike Champion Wayne Maxwell claimed another victory last weekend alongside the Tissot Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix, winning two of the three national Superbike support races to win the round for Team Suzuki.
Just a fortnight after sealing his first ASBK crown aboard the GSX-R1000, Maxwell qualified second on the grid and raced to that same position in Friday’s opening eight-lap affair; crossing the line just 0.044sec behind the winner.
Race two on Saturday morning saw Maxwell inch to victory, before he repeated the feat on Sunday morning to secure the overall on the biggest stage of the season.
Said Maxwell: “To cap off the year with another win is a great result for Suzuki in such an important event. It was a difficult weekend with the track conditions tough, but full credit to Team Suzuki and Dunlop for supplying me with a perfect bike and tyre combination to get the job done.”
Team Volvo Group Suzuki’s Robbie Bugden was fourth overall with 3-5-4 finishes across the weekend, narrowly missing a podium position by just one point on Sunday.
Said five-time New Zealand Superbike Champion Bugden “All in all it was a positive weekend, besides the mixed results. I made a few mistakes, which cost me overall, but it was great racing and we were in the mix pretty-much every race. The Suzuki worked really well and my Dunlop tyres did the job in all conditions. It capped off what has been a great year.”
The grand prix weekend concludes one of the most successful seasons in history for Team Suzuki, winning back-to-back ASBK titles with Maxwell and having Bugden finish third. Both riders finished on the podium at all seven rounds of the series.
1. Wayne MAXWELL (Team Suzuki) 70
2. Glenn ALLERTON 66
3. Josh HOOK 52
4. Robert BUGDEN (Team Volvo Group Suzuki) 51
5. Jamie STAUFFER 50
6. Linden MAGEE 45
7. Ben HENRY (Cube Racing Suzuki) 39
8. Sloane FROST 35
9. David TROTTER (Suzuki) 34
10. Mark HARRIS (Suzuki) 30
More, from a press release issued by Jayson Uribe:
Race Report for Jayson Uribe: Brands Hatch Season Finale**
Brands Hatch has been one of "those" kind of tracks for me; we have a love/hate relationship, and I think that the feeling is mutual. I had a great race, despite the red flag and the quick restart. I started off 28th on the grid due to a poor qualifying session on Saturday but managed to pull off a 7th place in my class and a top 10 overall. As of today, our team finished the season with a very respectable 11th place in the Championship overall.
During qualifying 1, I managed to get the required 5 laps in before I had to end the attempt, but my times were way off of the pace. I knew that the bike felt weird, but I couldn't put my finger on the suspension issue. Turns out my suspension was fine, but the front tire was completely flat. My attempts to better my placement on the grid with qualifying 2 were helpful, however, by the afternoon session, it was raining. Although my times for the second qualifying would have put me at 11th on the grid for that session, almost no one had better times than the previous morning session, unless they had a puncture or a mechanical.
At the start of the race, I was eager to get going. The rain was looming, and we all just wanted a clean get away. By the time the lights went green, the clouds opened up and the water poured down in buckets! All I could see was spray from the other riders tires and by the 5th corner, the race was red flagged due to the river running down the hill into the tight left hander. Everyone pulled in, and our team went to work getting the warmers on and getting it ready for the restart.
The race was shortened to an 8 lap sprint, down from 12, and it would also be a quick start. That means, one warm up lap, take the grid position, and GO! My second start was as good, if not better, than my first, and it allowed me to jump from 28th to 16th within the first 3 corners. The surface was slippery and there were rivers and standing water everywhere!
It was the most difficult race of this BSB season yet, due to the flooding on the track and the debris that had been washing onto the surface of the asphalt. , I knew that I just needed to run a steady yet aggressive pace to keep my position, and I had to finish to get any points at all.
In the end, it all worked out and I had some great battles with a Dutch rider that went down to the wire, with my margin of victory being only .068 seconds at the checkers! I knew he was there and I had to break his draft, so I had to make a bold last moment swerve to the right to keep him from sling-shotting past me.
This weekend, as the season drew to a close, my team mates, fellow racers, family and myself had a few moments to reflect on our BSB season. We all took an hour or so to talk about what the season had looked like to us, and what we thought it may begin to look like for next year. One thing that I know for sure is that I am not the same racer now as I was just 8 months ago when my family and I accepted the UK challenge and hopped the pond. My techniques in riding have changed, I have tightened up my lines, I am capable of working on all different types of cylinders, pistons, and exhausts that just aren't as readily available to our families in the States as they are here, and I have a broader sense of humor. We have all faced challenges, had many laughs, and in the end, we decided to come back in 2014 and make it a repeat appearance for the Americans in the BSB paddock.