The Donington Park circuit hosted the second round of the Thundersport GB Golden Era Superbike championship over the weekend of the 11th & 12th of April, with a full grid of 40 bikes.
After the superb performance first time out at the Brands Hatch circuit in Kent last month, RSRACING where delighted to pick up a new sponsor for the 2015 season. Brook suspension based in Bradford will be looking after all of the RSRacing team suspension needs. With new K-Tec fork internals and technical set up backing from owner Dave Brook, work commenced on Thursday 9th during testing at the Donington Park circuit to set up the bike.
After putting in numerous laps the team found a dry setting they thought would work for qualifying and the following races. Ryan commented “Working with Dave was amazing, his technical input is priceless and we gained valuable information from him.”
Saturday 11th involved qualifying and two races, during qualification, which was held in sunny conditions Ryan put the Continental backed Honda RC-51 on the front row of the grid qualifying in second place. “There were still a few changes we needed to make to the bike to make it handle better.” added team Manager Chris Strafford after qualification.
Both of Saturday’s races saw Ryan fight off some very tough competition to secure two fantastic 3rd places beating the current championship leader in both races by the closest of margins. Ryan went on to say, “The completion was fierce but I was determined to improve on the podium result from Brands Hatch now that we have improved the bikes handling”
Sunday 12th saw the team again running in two races over the course of the day. The weather for the first race was held in cold and very windy conditions with rain forecast for the 2nd race in the afternoon.
Determined to improve on the two 3rd places on Saturday, Ryan got a great start and went into the first corner in second place, a position he held until the last corner on the last lap where he ran too deep into the corner and piped to the line by 0.02s finishing in 3rd place again.
Race two saw the rain set in and with the bike fitted with the Continental wet tyres Ryan was quietly confident. Chris Strafford commented, “We did extensive testing with Continental at the beginning of the year at Mallory in wet conditions and Ryan was extremely quick, he knows the limits of the tyres.”
As soon as the race started Ryan shot into second place on the back wheel of the leader and they instantly gapped the rest of the field. At the end of the first lap Ryan came back round to finish the lap on his own in first place, the leader having crashed out. “After Richard had crashed I had a quick look back and saw a big gap” Ryan said.
The laps clicked by and with excellent lap signals from his team Ryan brought the Honda home for its maiden win of the year. Ryan said “I’m over the moon with the win, the bike handled amazing and the Continental tyres offered massive grip in the cold & wet conditions. The team have worked extremely hard getting the bike ready for this weekend’s races and I’m delighted I could reward them with the win.”
The next round is at Snetterton on the bank holiday weekend 4th & 5th May
The two races from Sunday will be televised on Motors TV on Thursday 23rd April or they can be viewed on the Thundersport GB web site iPlayer on Wednesday 29th April.
All photo credits to Ian Boldy Superbike Photography.