GR MOTOSPORT RIDERS HAD STRONG PERFORMANCES ACROSS ALL THREE CLASSES USING KAWASAKI MACHINERY, AT THE FIRST ROUND OF THE 2019 BENNETTS BRITISH SUPERBIKE CHAMPIONSHIPS AT SILVERSTONE OVER THE EASTER WEEKEND.
It was always going to be an interesting start to the season as GR Motosport has 3 different nationality riders, being rookies in 3 different classes of the highly competitive series, and all 3 performing superbly with top ten finished
BENNETTS BRITISH SUPERBIKE – Team WD-40 Superbike, CLAUDIO ‘SHORTS’ CORTI, ITALY #71
Lake Como resident, Claudio’s Superbike weekend started slowly on his Team WD-40 Kawasaki ZX10RR with 16th place in FP 1, just 0.8 off pole position. Over the next two sessions Shorts and his crew worked hard to narrow the gap to the front finishing FP 3 in fourth place just 0.2 from pole. Qualifying did not go quite to plan finishing 12th in a very tightly packed grid for his first BSB race.
RACE ONE: – SHORTS made a great start to the 30-lap race and started to move up the field he was in the thick of a battle for the top ten crossing the line 8th just a few seconds off the leaders.
RACE TWO: – Did not go to plan for Claudio crashing out on the first lap and picking up a shoulder injury which is needing on going treatment to be ready for the next race at Oulton Park
CLAUDIO ‘SHORTS’ CORTI: – “I was looking forward to my first BSB, and so for the race we showed up in Silverstone with a big ambition for sure with my goal of top 6.
My crew and I did a good job in practice and I think we showed our speed is very close to the top but the times are unbelievably close.
In race one we did a good job taking 8th but I am sad for the second race crashing out because I felt good.
Now I am working towards Oulton and will try to start to where I finished and aiming for the magic top 6 so see you all there. Thank you to my special crew for their hard work and as we progress the magic will happen, Ciao till then”.
EEMELI, CLAUDIO AND STORM having fun in the race debrief
PIRELLI NATIONAL SUPERSTOCK 1000 – STAUFF Quick Connect, EEMELI ‘EME’ LAHTI, FINLAND #22
Eemeli first weekend of Superstock 1000 racing was a real baptism as one of 57 riders to qualify for the 40 places on the grid. Eme has not encountered the BSB 3 race system before and it makes for a very hard weekends racing.
Eme qualified 15th for the first of two 24 lap races on Saturday. The key to these 2 races is that you have to finish the first race to get through to the second which is held 15 minutes later allowing for refuelling and new tyres. Your time from the first race also give you your grid for the second so creating the competitive balance for all the riders.
RACE ONE: – Eme is one of the quickest starters in the field blasting into the top ten on the first of 24 laps. It was imperative for Eme to finish this first race of the weekend to then go through into the second race of the two-part Saturday Event.
Eme from Lahti (He has the same name as his Town) in Finland settled down and worked his way through to finish a very creditable 6th place and earning 6th on the grid for race 2.
As the chequered flag dropped the race fell into the brilliant hands of Eemeli’s crew Mark, Scott and Ashely who had just 15 minutes to check over the Stauff Quick Connect kawasaki ZX10rr, re-fuel and fit new tyres and be on the grid ready for part 2 – Great Job Boys !
RACE TWO: – Another fantastic start for the second 24 laps and Eme was with the leaders starting a long battle for the top 5. In only his second race on a 1000 Eme did not quite have the pace of the front 4, but came home in 5th another great result.
RACE THREE: – In what was proving to be a very successful weekend Eme’s 3rd race was to continue that success. Another great start to Sundays 18 lap feature race put Eme in a position to run with the leaders in a fight for 4th with places changing every corner. The fight came down to the wire losing out to 4th by just 1/10th of a second.
Eemeli now sits 5th in the Championship as we move to Oulton this weekend.
EEMELI ‘Eme’ LAHTI: – “I was bit nervous before my first weekend with the new team. We had great days of testing behind us but everything was still so new.
Free practices went ok and my pace was getting better lap by lap. My riding style was still adapting to the bigger bike, so we had our hands full trying to find the right setup for bike. I qualified 15th on the grid.
Long story short, I took really good starts in all of the 3 races. Managed to keep up my pace all the way to finish line. P6, p5 and p5 out of 56 riders was a surprise for me.
I think we really maximised the points we could score from the weekend. More learning and knowledge from bike and we are fighting for podiums!
The team did amazing Job, I’d like to thank them and especially my own crew! Also, thanks to, all our sponsors for making this possible! We are on our way to the top”.
STORM getting ready to RACE
PIRELLI NATIONAL SUPERSTOCK 600 – STAUFF Quick Connect Academy, STORM STACEY, UK #79
15-Year-old Eccleshall rider Storm Stacey raised some eyebrows at Silverstone in the opening round of the Pirelli National Stock 600 series with a magnificent 4th place last Sunday. In his first race on a 600 Starting from P11 on the grid Storm ‘The Predator made his way through the pack on his Kawasaki ZX6r Ninja to finish just 4.5 second off the winner.
Storm and his crew Garry, Mark and Kieran put together a great weekend throughout practice and qualifying learning more each time he was on the bike and showing good race pace.
The team were thrilled with Storms debut performance on ‘Derek’, as the little Kawasaki is now known, and who performed faultlessly throughout the weekend and everyone feels there is yet more to come from pair.
STORM ‘The Predator’ STACEY: – “The bike was a joy to ride, predictably fast and loose. I am working hard on changing my style as I still feel like I am trying to ride it like a Moto3. Derek needs to be allowed to flow through the sectors, once I get them strung together the times become effortlessly
I need to build on what I have learned so far, improving all the time. Oulton is a technical circuit and I can’t wait to experience it on a 600, it’ll be like riding a rollercoaster compared to the Moto3.
I would like to say a massive thanks to everyone who supported me at GR Motosport in particular Geoff Crust for his guidance, Mark and Gary for all their hard work. My personal and team sponsors including Stauff UK, WD40, Trackside Hire, Swinton Insurance, RST, R&G Racing and Arai and everyone”.
BRENT GLADWIN MANAGING DIRECTOR GR MOTOSPORT LTD: – “What a fantastic first weekend of racing for the whole Team at Silverstone.
When you are preparing for the first British Superbike event of every season you are always at your best but can’t help wondering if you have everything just quite right and yet again my Team worked hard to have it perfect across all the 3 classes.
To leave the event with strong top ten finishes from all 3 riders is fantastic. Claudio’s fall in BSB race 2 was the only glitch and sadly he has picked up an injury.
I have to thank all the team and especially Danny for all their and his hard work. We will all be ready for more exciting races at the 2nd round this Bank Holiday at Oulton Park, where we would love to see you all there!”