The Gearlink Kawasaki team headed to their local circuit this weekend at Thruxton for round six of the MCE British Superbike Championship. In the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship Glenn Irwin had a solid weekend with a fifth and seventh place respectively, his team-mate Luke Hedger gained a good 12th and 11th place in the two races.
Free practice was dry for the two Gearlink riders and both were working hard to find a set up that suited their style on the quick and bumpy circuit. However, the weather changed dramatically for qualifying on Saturday morning and the rain came down heavily delaying their session by nearly two hours. Glenn secured seventh for the grid and Luke 12th for the Sprint race later that afternoon. The conditions soon dried up and the pair were eager to get a good race under their belts. Glenn got a great start and was away with the leading bunch and Luke also got a good start. Glenn fought hard but was unable to make a strong pass but gained a solid fifth, Luke was involved in a close four bike scrap for ninth but had to settle for 12th.
For race two Glenn was fifth on the grid and Luke moved up to 10th for the epic 18-lap race. Glenn held his position after lap one whilst Luke dropped a place to 11th, Glenn once again was up with the front bunch and his times were good enough to run with them. He was riding well until he was sat up into one of the really quick turns which unsettled him and he slipped a couple of places backwards eventually crossing the line in seventh. Luke was locked in a three bike battle for tenth place, losing out by one place on the last lap to finish in 11th.
Glenn Irwin - "I'm really pleased with how the weekend went and I don't think the results showed how much effort that myself and the Gearlink team put in this weekend. They really worked hard for me as I was struggling to find a set up I was comfortable with but we got it right in both races. I was hit in race two by Billy (McConnell) on the very fast Village section, this did stop my rhythm for a few laps and I had to try and settle back down but at that point the leaders had got away. I hope we can get some good results at Oulton Park next weekend."
Luke Hedger - "It has been a little frustrating this year and I've had a few minor bike problems that have caused me to miss some time out on track. This weekend went ok but I was happy as I was only 0.9 off the lap record and just 0.6 off the time of the first placed man. The Gearlink team worked really hard to ensure I had a good set up for the races and every time we go out now we are making progress and in-roads, I know this is another learning year for me and just hope I can get some strong results at the remaining rounds."
It was another hard weekend for Ben Wilson in the MCE British Superbike Championship. A technical issue forced Ben to retire from race one and sit out of race two.
Ben Wilson - "It has been so frustrating for us this year as I know myself and the team are worth more than this. We have scratched our heads as to what the problem may be and now we think it might be the frame. This will all be looked at again before Oulton and I really hope for everyone, especially the Gearlink Kawasaki team we can start to make some progress and get the results I feel we deserve."
Team Manager Michael de Bidaph - "Team Manager Michael de Bidaph - "The weekend started quite well with Ben and we were looking into a good set up for him for the races. We changed the yokes on Saturday and then the bike became unstable and impossible for Ben to ride. He tried his hardest but didn't want to risk damaging the bike or injuring himself so we decided it was better to withdraw from the second Superbike race in the afternoon.
Following further investigations we now feel the frame may be out of alignment which could have been caused by a previous crash, we will look into this before Oulton Park. It is very annoying and frustrating for the team as we would have liked to have made more progress than this at this stage in the season.
The Supersport riders have ridden well this weekend; both Glenn and Luke had two good races. It was disappointing for Glenn that he had an impact with Billy as he was in with the leading pack, thankfully he stayed on and got the result he did. Luke had another strong weekend and he is now in a class where the riders are another level and he is learning new information at every round. We hope both riders can continue their progress at Oulton Park this coming weekend and we also hope that progress will be made with Ben."
2014 GEARLINK TEAM SPONSORS
AKRAPOVIC - B & C EXPRESS - CN TRADING (GLENN) - DAYTONA (BEN) - DAMEN LEATHERS - DBR - FORCEFIELD - GALFER - GB RACING - GEARLINK LTD - GOODRIDGE - JAMES JAMIESON CONSTRUCTION (GLENN) - JOHNY WILLS PHOTOGRAPHY - K-TECH - KTtapeuk.co.uk - MARK TALBOT (GLENN) - MEGASTORE247 (GLENN) - MET HEALTHCARE (GLENN) - MWR AIR FILTERS - NGK SPARK PLUGS - OCTANORM - PERFORMANCE PARTS - PERFORMANCE FRICTION BRAKES - PRO CLEAN - PRO-BOLT - R & G RACING - RENTHAL - ROCK OIL - SAMCO SPORT - SHARK HELMETS - SHOEI HELMETS (LUKE) - SIDI (LUKE) - SIGMA PERFORMANCE - SINNIS - SKIDMARX - SOLO SIGNS - TIM TODD SURFACING - TSUBAKI - VALE LIVESTOCK - WWW.1STCHOICE-FLOORING.CO.UK (LUKE)