Season Finale – Blog, Two Special Rides

Season Finale – Blog, Two Special Rides

‘ I had a short break away from the National Superstock Calendar after splitting with the Russo Racing Team, post Cadwell Park. Shortly after, a ride was organised for a return at the final round aboard a very different machine, that being the Aprilia RSV4 RF, V4, of EHA Racing and Aprilia UK.

I was very excited to race at my Favourite Circuit, Brands Hatch GP, aboard the Aprilia, as I had not ridden a different Manufacturer’s motorcycle, other than Kawasaki, since 2011.
From initial study of the Aprilia, I had determined that I would suit the bike, with its small, short nature. This theory was confirmed in practice, upon my first ride of the bike.
I adapted to the motorcycle quickly, and thoroughly enjoyed riding the machine, even though it is totally different to what I am used to, and I got to know its character as the weekend played out.
By second qualifying we had broke through some initial goals I had set in place, and got down to a lap time of which was only a tenth of a second off my fastest ever time set around the GP circuit, to qualify in 10th position.

Photo Credit - Steve Addison
Photo Credit – Steve Addison
Coming in to race day my goals had been re assessed, and I now knew I could battle within the top 10, if given similar conditions to qualifying.
However, this would not be the case.
A wet but drying track met us on Race Day, giving us no choice but to make an educated guess of the set up.
This guess was made by myself and the team, but it did not pay off, and I struggled over the race distance to keep a constant pace from the restricted grip given.
16th place would be the final position, but my opinion on the Aprilia RSV4 RF did not change in that I believe I can succeed on it, given the appropriate amount of time on the bike to keep pace in any condition.

Thanks go out to the EHA Racing Team, Aprilia UK and my personal backers for the opportunity, of which I really appreciate. I thoroughly enjoyed racing with the EHA Racing Team, of whom I believe are set for success.

Photo Credit - JTW Photography
Photo Credit – JTW Photography

A guest ride was the last stop for 2016, at a race I’ve always wanted to compete in, that being the Sunflower Trophy at Bishops Court, Northern Ireland.

I’d race another special machine for Gearlink Kawasaki, on their ZX10R Superbike, against some experienced local riders, and established names from the British Superbike Championship.

A new circuit, bike and grip level would have to be learnt without appropriate practice, however we made fast improvements and managed to qualify on the front row on our first day.

I have raced in Supersport in the past with Gearlink Kawasaki, they are a team I am fond of, and of whom I enjoy racing with immensely. In both Superbike races I finished 4th, but in the Sunflower Trophy Race was unfortunately wiped out of the competition by another rider who crashed in to me on lap one.

I had hoped to deliver a podium result for the Gearlink Team aboard the Superbike, but nevertheless the team received great podiums from the Supersport riders who put on a great show. Fun was had by all, everyone enjoyed their racing, and I can’t thank Michael and Norma De Bidaph enough for the experience and opportunity.
Further thanks go out to the team for their hard work.

It has been a turbulent year. One that has not gone to plan, but yet I have worked hard at every endeavour, and hopefully shown my potential despite adversity.

I want to thank the people who have helped me throughout, your support means a lot, everyone knows who they are, and I’ll be in contact shortly if not already to thank you all personally.

In review, I’m still hungry to succeed.
One thing stays the same,
I want to win. ‘