I came into Brands with hope of a good weekend as I wanted to finish the season strong. I podium was my aim.
Friday practice 1 was wet so I rode round and built up my confidence in the wet, nothing more really to say about that session I finished 13th EVO but I didn't really push as it was only FP1. Practice 2 was dry and our only dry session throughout the weekend until the race on Sunday. we started with similar settings to Silverstone but with different gearing and the bike felt good, also we tried Ferodo brake pads and they worked well. I finished 7th EVO.
Saturday qualifying and the weather was cloudy but the track was damp and drying, I started the qualifying on a dry front and inter rear and got the feeling of the track put in a good time and then I came in for a new dry rear and placed myself 3rd EVO on the grid and 17th overall, I was happy with that and felt as though I was getting more and more confident on the ZX6 in tricky conditions. I knew from 3rd on the grid I had a good chance of a podium. Buzzing for the race!
Saturday sprint race (10 Laps) The conditions were cloudy but a wet track and everybody started on wets and the track was slowly drying. I got a good start and was right behind Day and Field but coming out of druids Paul Curran high-sided and his bike was in the middle of the track right in front of me unfortunately I had nowhere to go and hit his bike, it stopped me dead but lucky I stayed on and didn't hit Paul, I had a massive hole in my fairing and dropped back to 14th EVO and then worked my way back to 7th, I overtook 5 riders on the last lap! I was annoyed but knew it was no one's fault as the conditions were very tricky. my lap time had put me 6th EVO on the grid for Sunday.
Sunday feature race (18 laps) finally it was sunny and dry! I got a good start and was 4th EVO on the first lap behind Rose and Field, I made a pass on Rose on lap 5 and then picked off the laps behind Field on lap 10 Hastings passed me and I sat behind him till 3 laps to go then I made a tough pass at Graham hill and he got me back on the lap after at paddock hill after that we were battling to the flag he passed me at hawthorns on the last lap but I got him back at Stirlings because I really wanted that podium! into Clearways I lost the front and rear of the bike but kept it pinned to the flag and finished 3rd! I was so happy that I got a podium on the last race of the season after such a tough year.
Massive thanks to Mark Hanna for sticking by me all year, Road and Racing, Mum and dad, Ellie, Aaron, Paul and Bev, Alan and Davy's Gripp and everyone else who has supported me in 2014. Also a big thanks to my sponsors Oxford Products, HJC, The Pipe Werx, Ferodo Brakes, Maxton, Vroom Media, Futuremoto and Purbrook Garage.
This year has been a big learning curve and I think I have done well considering my injury at Snetterton and having to miss Snetterton and Knockhill also suffering with bad arm pump from round 2 and then having my operation to sort it and missing Cadwell. But this season I've had 2 wins and 4 podiums and some good races. I glad to be staying with Mark Hanna and Road and Race for next season and looking forward to giving the EVO championship a good shot!
After a mega weekend at Assen I was looking for another solid weekend.
Friday was a difficult day and after FP2 I was 8th EVO, not where I wanted to be but I knew that we had some good changes to make for Saturday and also it was only my second ever race meeting at Silverstone so I was still learning about the 600 around the circuit. I was happy as I knew I still has a lot more in me for Saturday!
Saturday qualifying was tough as it was delayed by 2 hours because of heavy rain and standing water on the circuit. Out for qualifying eventually and the track was soaking wet, I was 3rd EVO with 3 minutes to go but on my last flying lap I made a slight mistake into Vale and did't improve my time after being a second up on that lap, I was annoyed with myself for making the small mistake and I ended up 7th EVO on the grid and 23rd overall.
Saturday race I got an average start and was caught up in a battle with a few other riders and it was a difficult race as it was drying but still a few damp areas so it was important to stay on line or risk crashing and a lot of riders came off in that race. After getting caught up, I felt I didn't push as hard as I could have and I let myself down in that race I am a lot better than that in iffy conditions and for some reason I didn't push at my best, I finished 8th EVO which was a let down and not what everyone deserved.
Sunday race, after a long chat with Mark I needed to have a good race and push to make my way through from way back on the grid. Off the line I got an OK start and pushed from the word go, I made my way to the front of a big group of riders and had some good battles and got up to 4th EVO leading my group, Tim Hastings then past me and we battled all the way to flag! I past him on the last lap but just couldnt get the drive onto the last staright and he past me back down the straight. I finished 5th EVO which was a good result considering my grid position and the tough weekend I had! That race was one of the best I've had this season!
Massive thanks to Road and Race, Mark Hanna, Ellie, Aaron, Mum and Dad, Paul and Bev, Alan, GT85, Oxford Products, HJC, Muc Off and The Pipe Werx.
Looking forward to Brands the final round now and I though in the last race I have made a step forward with my braking and overtaking. I know I need a strong final round at Brands and I will be pushing my hardest to finish the year on a high and show everyone how good I am after a tough first year in British Supersport.