TT2012 Monday Race Reports
The Supersport 1 race started in near perfect conditions although a little late due to an accident on the road. I got underway, not having my best first lap ever I seemed to struggle to get my head out of the big bike style for the early part of the lap. I posted a 118mph lap but not running as high up the leaderboard as I know I’m capable of. The bike seemed to be struggling for top speed and this was confirmed from the speed trap at Sulby. During the second lap on the run to Ramsay my foot slipped on the left footpeg. I looked down expecting to see oil but nothing. Again my foot slipped – another quick look down I could see that the footpeg was loose. Pulling off the road at Parliament Square one of the marshals kindly loaned me an Allen key set and I set about removing the hanger and tightening the peg bolt up. At this point one of the marshals decided it would be appropriate to ask me my thoughts about my Knox handroid gloves – I didn’t answer!!! Back on the road I’d lost five minutes so my race was effectively over but pressed on to get some time on the bike, setting my fastest lap of 118.7mph on the final lap. A disappointing race for me but an easy fix and some changes are on the cards for Wednesday’s race now.
The delayed start to the Superstock race meant we got underway at 6.30pm. I’m never a big fan of racing in the evening as the flies and low sun cause much more of a visibility issue. I had again made some subtle changes to the rear shock on the ZX10 hoping to further improve stability. The first run down Bray Hill showed that the bike was better and I pressed on, getting overtaken late in the lap but holding my own and not letting them drop me. As we pitted after lap two there was four of us together. The usual slick pitstop by Jo, Dad and James put me back on track second of the group on the rear wheel of Stefano Bonneti. Davy Morgan passed me on the straight to Appledene which was a shame as then I was unable to get back past until Sulby Straight. It’s always difficult following anyone around this course as you need to see where you’re going due to the high speeds. I was then pushing Bonneti around again all the way through Ramsay and over the mountain. He gapped me in the first sector which highlighted an area which I need to improve. The bike was still very unstable over the start line and down Bray but otherwise was a big improvement. I slowly dragged the gap back in until the finish flag to lap at 124.2mph and 14th place just 3 seconds from 13th. This was frustrating as I must have lost that amount of time during my on the road battles. I’m happy with the result taking some fairly big name scalps on my way to a good finish in a very competitive class.
Two more races to go – Supersport 2 and then the Senior. We have another Senior practice on Wednesday afternoon and with improvements to the Norton suspension I’m hoping for a faster laptime in dry conditions to get us up the grid in the main race.
Posted: June 5, 2012