With the two previous meetings blighted by constantly changing weather conditions, the Thundersport paddock were hoping for a dry race weekend at Mallory Park, and thankfully they got it!
Mallory has been a popular re-introduction to the Thundersport calendar in recent seasons, although for some riders it has proved to be something of a bogey circuit.
One of those riders is RS Racing’s Ryan Strafford, whose GP1 Classic title challenge was left hanging in the balance last season after a double DNF in Leicestershire. However, the reigning champion made a solid start to his weekend with back-to-back wins on Saturday on the team’s YZF-R1. George Pyecroft managed to snatch Sunday’s opening victory, but with title rival Kieran Smith back in third, things were still to plan until an uncharacteristic mistake saw Ryan have a big off in the final contest. The Yorkshireman was taken to hospital and x-rays revealed multiple breaks to one of his fingers, although he is determined to be back on the grid in a month’s time to extend his series lead.
Racing on the same grid, four solid second placed finishes also helped Andy Denyer to maintain his lead in the Golden Era SBK championship, while Andy Challis holds on to fourth, while RS Racing’s Andrew Meachen moves up to sixth.
Another rider who put together a string of excellent results at the weekend was Ryan Garside, riding in the Golden Era Steelsport championship for Myerscough College. Garside ended his weekend on a high after taking a win in the final race over championship rival Gethin Edwards, and that result plus three second places earlier in the meeting allowed him to extend his lead in the title race to 72 points. The high flying Ben Doolan was absent from the meeting at Mallory in the Golden Era Supersport class, which left Liam Vella to fly the flag for Continental as he took his second podium of the year in race two, while former Steelsport champion Dave Langley also joined him in the top ten.
Mallory Park also saw another impressive weekend from Stocktwin title favourite Alberto Solera, who has only been off the podium once so far this season. Alby took back-to-back wins on the Saturday, followed up with a 2nd and another win on the Sunday which not only extends his Stocktwin series lead, but also propels him to the top of the highly competitive Supertwin GP2 championship. Craig Szycypek also came away with a hard fought podium finish in Sunday’s opening race.
In the 600 Sportsman class, Chris Lavisher continues to impress, and despite constant niggling issues with the bike in Leicestershire over the weekend he still managed to pick up some solid points, and was unlucky not to make the podium on Sunday as he took home a meeting’s best finish of 4th.
Last but by no means least, Smith twins Christian and Kieran continue to improve with each passing round at Thundersport in the Superteens class under the watchful eye of dad Robert and the RS Racing Academy.
The fifth round of the Thundersport season will see riders head to Donington late next month, with many riders starting to look more closely at championship positions, and as always, we’ll be there!
Image credits – Ian Boldy Superbike Photography
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