Mcconnell Fights to Second Place at Brands Hatch
By: londonbikers.com | Published 09 August 2009, 20:54 | Views: 867 | tags: bsb, bss, british supersport, fuchs-silkolene, map raceways, yamaha, billy mcconnell, lee johnston, allan jon venter, brands hatch, kent
The hard-riding Australian pulled back vital championship points with his gritty ride to second place. Off the line he was fourth but was pushed wide at Druids hairpin leaving him to fight his way back to the leading pack. The safety car was also deployed for four laps which added to the drama, but allowed McConnell to get a better feel for his front tyre and also bunched up the pack.
Once the safety car came in the race was on and he held onto Championship leader Steve Plater until the final lap, where he passed him and fended off any potential moves from the Honda rider.
“That was a tough race and we had front end problems all weekend but Andy, Johnny and K-Tech all worked really hard to get it sorted. I got a good start and then got hammered by everyone; I ran wide and was over the grass at one point.
“Then the safety car came out too, my tyre cooled down a bit so I actually had better feel. On the last lap I knew I had to wait for the right moment, then I got the drive and he knew I was there so I braked as late as I could and got my head down. I just kept working on getting good drive and waiting for him to try and pass. It was good points for the championship so I’m really pleased.”
Allan Jon Venter raced to an excellent eighth place with lap times which were on a par with the front runners. The South African was pleased with the progress he made during the race and the potential he has shown at this round.
“We made a change after warm-up to a new clutch so it was bit of a gamble. On the first lap the bike spat me out of the seat and I lost about five places. I decided to switch to a different map and it was ideal. I felt good and my times were matching the leaders I just need to do them in qualifying. A big thank you to Jason, MAP and all my sponsors. I’m looking forward to Cadwell Park now, it is a bit of a motocross track and I enjoy it. I need to get qualifying sorted out and get a result.”Lee Johnston’s technical gremlins continued as he exited the race on lap seven with a mechanical problem. He had been running in tenth place at the time and looked set for a good result.
“I was catching the leaders and I’d been concentrating on saving my tyre for later in the race but unfortunately my bike had a fault and that was my race over. I’m just staying positive and looking forward to Cadwell Park.”
The ninth round of the Fuchs-Silkolene British Supersport Championship will take place on the 29th – 31st August at Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire.
1. James Westmoreland Triumph 27:50.845
2. Billy McConnell MAP Raceways Yamaha +0.728
3. Steve Plater Honda +0.933
4. Ben Wilson Kawasaki +2.617
5. Ian Hutchinson Honda +4.361
6. Craig Fitzpatrick Yamaha +5.444
7. Sam Lowes Honda +5.809
8. Allan Jon Venter MAP Raceways Yamaha +6.667
9. James Webb Honda +7.708
10. Jack Kennedy Yamaha +7.752
DNF. Lee Johnston MAP Raceways Yamaha +11 laps
1. Steve Plater 125
2. Billy McConnell 118
3. Ben Wilson 105
4. James Westmoreland 97
5. Daniel Cooper 81
6. Dan Linfoot 52
7. James Webb 50
8. Ian Hutchinson 46
9. Tom Grant 44
10. Craig Fitzpatrick 42
12. Lee Johnston 36
16. Allan Jon Venter 22
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