James East Round 9 National 1000 Superstock Cadwell Park
After a successful test the week before Round 9 at Cadwell Park I was really looking forward to this race. I had followed superbikes in testing and set fast lap times so the podium was my goal.
We didn’t enter the track due to wet and drying conditions, we felt there was no need to take a risk on a track which would be dry for the rest of the weekend.
Light rain was falling on a dry track so I quickly put in a respectable time of 1:31:7 on lap 3 before returning to the pits shortly after due to a damp track.
The session finished with me in 1st in group A by 0.9 and 7th overall as the track was dry for longer in the group B letting others better my time.
I got down to a time of 1:30:9 which I wasn’t happy with. I rushed the session and didn’t find the space I needed to do the times I thought I was capable of. This put me 8th on the grid but I knew I could improve.
I tried some different lines in warm up which made it easier to get through the last sector, this made me feel better for the race.
I got a great start from 8th and was up to 6th. Lap 2 I moved up to the leading group and fought off Simon Andrews to hold my position. I knew the front runners had more pace so I needed to move through to see if I could match this and stay in touch so I committed to a move on Lee Jackson at Turn 3 ‘Charlie’s but he closed the door which left me no room. I just avoided tripping over the bike but this put me on the grass. I rejoined in 18th and got up to 11th before the red flag came out for another incident.
I made a mistake, you make decisions and I made the wrong one. In the last 3 rounds I will be showing more patience and working to turn my pace in to results we are capable of and put us on the podium. Idaq Motorsport and PCR did a great job so thank you to them and all of my personal sponsors.
We entered the Silverstone 200 meeting supporting MotoGP as a test for the National Superstock round there later on in the season.
We had warm weather and sunshine for the full meeting and my first ride at Silverstone on the Kawasaki ZX10R.
Photograph By Paul Egan
As many laps as possible were needed to learn the long flat Arena GP circuit so the aim of the game for every session was to stay out for as long as possible and make any changes needed after the session.
We quickly got to pace and was in to the 2:11’s from the first session.
We made some changes for the better with the bike to make it turn faster and qualified well amongst the array of bike including superbikes on the 4th row with a low 2:11.
I did a 2:10:9 on lap 4 but came in to some trouble when tipping in to the ultra fast maggots corner at 160mph I got stuck in to a fake neutral between 5th and 4th, the bike came around on me and forces me forward into the gravel. I had to lay the bike down before I hit the barrier.
We had made some changes again which made the bike turn better and hold a line again. I did a 2:10:5 on lap 2 but on lap 3 another rider crashed in front of me at the Vale chicane and I had nowhere to go, hitting the bike and was thrown from mine.
‘We had some bad luck but we will have good pace come round 11 to push for the podium. Thank you to my personal sponsors and WaltersMedical for coming on board for this round’.
Friday was as wet as it gets, and the forecast showed rain throughout the weekend. I just did a few laps in this session to make sure the bike was straight from the Silverstone off. The bike was prepared and was running perfectly.
Qualifying 1 It was wet again. This was the first time I had ridden the bike competitively in the wet and we quickly found that the setup we predicted didn’t work. I couldn’t turn the bike and had next to no grip.
Unfortunately the slick Donington surface caught me out on the exit of the old hairpin and I had a high side. The bike was relatively un damaged but later we would realise the bike had an engine problem from the crash and we would need a new engine, which we were unable to source so I was forced to sit out the rest of the weekend.
‘I was obviously devastated with having to sit out this round. We were generating really good momentum in the season and recently have experienced some bad luck and knock backs however I will not let it affect my actions for the final two rounds of the season at Silverstone and Brands Hatch GP. Consistency will allow us to be on the podium as my pace is fast enough. I will need to qualify well and ride patient and precise races of which I know I am capable of. I’ve got 3 weeks now to prepare for Silverstone and I will arrive there ready. Thank you to my family, my personal sponsors, my team and everyone for their support.’
Thank you to my personal sponsors.
Homechoice Carpets-Leeds – GHM Services – ToiletSpares.co.uk – Cougar Leathers – Bikers Division Ltd – Daytona Boots – R&G Racing – Samco Sport By Racebikebitz Ltd – Paul ‘Noddy’ Brown – Walters Medical