Cadwell Park 9 August 30

 

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Cadwell Park 9th August 2003, Derby Phoenix

Go Star racers in attendance: were:

Back at Cadwell Park again and fuggin hell was it hot and humid. Not exactly the kind of weather to be dressing up in leather and chucking a bike around, but at least it wasn't wet.

Pretty eventful weekend though. I went into this weekend 2nd in the novice championship and only 15 points off 1st and it looked like I could make a major inroad or take 1st place because the guy leading it had walked down his stairs on Friday morning only to kick the hoover, breaking his little toe. Shame!!. However, he decided to race so was going to be scoring points.

Saturday saw me finish 6th in my all comers qualifier which put me 17th on the grid for the A final. Now, it was only Cadwell two weeks ago that I'd managed to get into the A final, and even that was in 33rd place, so I was well chuffed.

First steel frame race was good - started 15th and finished 7th, plus 1st Novice so that was 3 points taken off matey in 1st place.

Sat out the A final as it was race 12 and my next steelie race was race 13. Got a reasonable start to the race and was running in 8th but the heat was a nightmare - it was really sapping my strength and concentration. Still I was 1st novice, that is until I made a stupid mistake. I'd had a warning the lap before when braking for Mansfield that I'd left it a bit late and had the back end in the air and jumping around but I'd managed to scrub enough speed off and get it turned, albeit wide. Still, got away with it and next time around at the same place I said to myself "brake early, brake early", which I then promptly ignored and braked even later. This time I couldn't get the bike settled in time for the corner and so had to run straight on up the convenient slip road. I got the bike turned only to see two novices come past, one of which was the guy in 1st place in the championship, and by the time I got back on track I was a good 10 seconds back on them with one lap to go. Did my best to try and catch them (which wasn't really going to happen) but the anger took over and I had a few interesting rear end drifts at about 90mph cranked hard over for Chris Curve. Like to think I'd slid it on purpose, but that would be fibbing.

So ended up 3rd novice and 15th and was really annoyed at myself as I had been in 8th and comfortably in 1st place for novice. So instead of taking another 2 points off 1st place I gave him back the 3 points I'd taken off him in the morning. Calmed down after about an hour and restocked my pram with my toys.

Saturday evening was a blast - some of the guys had managed to get hold of a massive Red Bull tent thing (a 15ft high tent with one pole up the middle and no sides). They'd also brought along a set of drums and a some guitars and put on an impromptu concert covering loads of great rock classics. It was great - sat eating the BBQ, a beer in hand and a rock concert.

Sunday, woke up a little bit hung over and the heat was just murder - it was only 9 am!! First All Comers qualifier was just dire - I had new tyres to scrub in during the race (not too bad as they were scrubbed in after the 1st lap), plus I'd lowered the gearing on the bike (had been hitting the rev limiter in top at the end of Park straight. Big mistake - I lost the drive out of the corners and didn't have a long enough straight to take advantage of the gearing. Plus I was still half asleep. Finished 12th I think.

Changed the gearing back and went out for the 1st steelie race which was to be the best race I've ever had. Started 15th and got a reasonable start (11th) and then passed a couple of guys taking me to 9th and in front I could see the 1st placed novice in 7th. I got past the guy in 8th and then on the next lap dove underneath the guy in 7th at the end of the start finish straight, which was bloody quick and he said afterwards he had to pick the bike up as he nearly clipped my rear wheel. We then followed the guy in 6th around for a lap who was so slow getting drive onto Park straight that I nearly went up the back of him but had to back off, losing my drive. Next time around I hung back to get the drive onto Park and as we drew up to the 200m braking marker I pulled alongside him to out brake him. Unfortunately so did the guy behind me, so there were 3 of us all trying to out brake each other from 145mph. Matey behind me won, followed by me. However, I got him back at the end of the start finish straight for him to come back on the brakes at Park Corner, but this time he drifted wide exiting Park and had a monster slide getting onto the power. Unfortunately so did I as I tried to take advantage of it. Still, onto Chris curve)and it was entertaining being right in his wheel tracks and watching his bike fishtailing as he laid down a big black line from the rear. Onto the final lap and we were right with each other and I nearly got him back at Chris curve when he made a mistake and ran slightly wide. Trouble is I was slow to react and so couldn't quite get my front wheel in front before the Gooseneck so had to back off, and that was where we finished.

Great race even if I did loose another 2 points to him but I was really pleased with my riding because at the start of the year I couldn't get near him (nor many people) but as the year has gone on I've got quicker and now know I can run with him and beat him.

Events took a turn for the worse when Tony was involved in a nasty start line accident. The race had been stopped 3 times and they had decided to send the bikes back to the pits. This meant they had to leave the start line and then turn right about 100 yards up the track through a cut out and then rejoin the track where the pit entrance was. Tony had just slowed to turn right when he was T Boned by a guy on an R6 who decided to hoist a wheelie. Tony must have been hit at about 40mph and his right leg and ankle took the full impact. The aftermath is basically a bust tibia and fibia and smashed ankle, as in he hasn't got an ankle socket left anymore. He was taken to Lincoln hospital which was a joke as they couldn't reconstruct his ankle (they just gathered most of the bits and mashed them together) and they also didn't have a plastic surgeon to be able to give him skin grafts to heal the wound. So basically they left him like that. It then took his girlfriend (and not the hospital) all of Monday to phone around 16 hospitals in London to try and get him a bed and a plastic surgeon and an orthopaedic surgeon. Now she knows about as much about anatomy as I do astro physics so she struggled to explain why Lincoln couldn't do the work. Anyway, she managed to get a bed in London which a kind nurse in Lincoln then decided to cancel. Idiot.

I went to see him on the Monday evening along with John Hewitt and John made Lincoln Hospital find a bed in London plus the right people to try and fix him. Hopefully he'll now be on his way down there where he can get someone to rebuild his ankle and patch up his skin.

Anyway, my last race had a start line pile up with 4 riders involved (only one broken leg). Restarted again and I finished 7th and 2nd novice.

Iíve only got another 2 meetings left, one at Mallory September 8th and a 2 day meeting at Snetterton at the end of September. That leaves me with 6 races to catch 1st place, which realistically I need him to no score at least one race to have any chance, but we'll see what happens.

 

Race Report

Snetterton 12-14 August 05
Brands Hatch  16-17 05
Pembrey 24-26 June 05
Croix en Ternois 11-12 June 05
Brands 30 April & 1 May 05
Lydden Hill 2-3 April 05
Snetterton 12-13 March 05
Brands GP 29-30 June 04
Lydden 15-16 May 04
Cadwell Park 17-18 April 04
Croft 3 April 04
Brands Hatch 5,6,7 March 04
Snetterton 27,28 September 03
Mallory 7 September 03
Snetterton 30-31 August 03
Cadwell Park 9 August 30
Cadwell Park 26-27 July 03
Croix en Ternois 13-12 July 03
Mallory Park 6 July 03
Mallory Park 26 May 03
Brands Hatch 24-26 May 03
Snetterton 3,4,5 May 03
Lydden Hill 4,5,6 April 03
Snetterton 29 March 03
Croft 28-30 March 03
Snetterton 22 March 03
Brands Hatch 8-9 March 03

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