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A weekend of two halves at brands hatch this weekend. The team travelled to Brands Hatch on Thursday evening filled with nerves, brought on from the relay problems uncovered at mallory park the week before.
Friday began with the arrival of our data analyst, Adam Christie, keen to help the team extract the full potential out of the weekend.
Fortunately, our first few laps of Friday practice were filled with relief as the bike decided to play ball and the problems from the weekend before had been corrected. General acclimatisation with the new fairing for brian and Matt, accompanied with set up tweaks were the story for Friday’s two sessions.
Happy with the bike and content for the next day, the team relaxed a little over Friday evening.
Saturday practice went well, again with the bike running smoothly and playing with the set ups a little more.
Qualifying was up next and The boys secured a pole in the F2 cup and 6th overall, filling the team with confidence going into the first race of the season.
The start wasn’t the best, the rear wheel just sat spinning on the dirty track until finally it gripped and the boys got moving.
Many other teams had similar struggles off of the grid, meaning the boys didn’t lose many places. All was well until disaster struck going into turn 5, clearways. The rear wheel washed away from under the bike and sent the #8 machine backwards into the gravel. The whole field passed and the boys got the bike cleanly back on circuit with a game of catch-up about to commence. Quickly catching up to the pack brian made some really clean moves to carve through the pack. Getting stuck behind a bike for a little too long stopped the boys from getting up to where they felt they should’ve been. A finish of P4 led to some conversing between the team.
A relatively early night for the team came on Saturday with a fresh mindset for Sunday’s runnings.
The practice on Sunday was used for running in a rear tyre and getting some more set up tweaks tested. The bike felt good and there was definitely an excited feeling for the race, and a thought of possible triumph was in the mindset of the team.
Starting from 9th on the grid and getting a fairly average getaway off the grid and saw the boys settling into a calm ride, hoping not to repeat Saturdays mistake. Brian brought the previous days ideas of overtaking into fruition with some very clean, aggressive moves past the competition and into the lead of the cup race. The second placed machine stayed close to the powerhouse bikes tail crossing the line with just 0.04 of a second separating them.
Brian and Matty, along with the rest of the team came into parc ferme with pure excitement over the teams first victory in 2021. Celebrations commenced and thoughts of a good year ahead became apparent!
The team left the circuit for the long drive back to derby, knowing there are some significant changes to make to the bike before round 2 at Donington park.
Thank you to C.E.S for loaning us Adam for the weekend, he’s been a massive help!