Our race riders bounce back from unlucky breaks

It was a case of unlucky breaks, to both body and bike, for the race riders we support at their ‘home’ round at local circuit Snetterton.

Haydon Smith, who rides for Hi-Precision Racing with Shelf & Rail Co, missed round three on the first weekend of May as his broken hand was still not strong enough to race.

But father Nick took to the track although, as Friday was a washout, he decided not to go out and celebrated Haydon’s birthday instead.

The weather was good on Saturday and Nick got out at the back for Formula 400 qualifying, struggled to get a clear lap, but still qualified second on the grid.

On the first lap of race one, Nick managed to grind out his side fairing on the Agostini bend and ran wide. By the time he got sorted Andy Gill was 20 bike lengths ahead. Nick did not have the pace to chase him down and finished second.

Delays on Saturday saw race two moved to Sunday morning.

Nick did not get a good start in race two, losing a lot of places. He got back into second on the first lap but, again, Andy Gill was long gone and he finished second again.

Nick put in some good times in the third race, matching Andy’s times for a few laps, but was never close enough to make a move. He settled for another second.

Andy’s gearbox failed off the line in race four so it was pretty boring for Nick who went on to win.

He used his pit board well and managed the gap to Jake Donkersley who was starting to show good pace on his new Kawasaki ZX-4RR.


Meanwhile, the rain on Friday’s test day meant Fred Mcmullan, who needed to see how his Kawasaki ZX-6R felt after his highside at Pembrey in Wales, only went out in three sessions.

It seemed to handle well but something was not right. Fred initially thought it might be him as it was his first time on the bike since the crash.

The issue became worse in Saturday’s qualifying but he put himself 18th on the grid for the first race in Bemsee’s Dart MRO 600 class.

The issue became clear from the first lap and Fred could feel a problem with the gearbox. For his own safety, and that of other riders, he pulled off. That was the end of racing his 636 for the weekend.

His team decided to use the British Motorcycle Racing Club hire bike, a Kawasaki Ninja 400, and he was put in the Team Green Junior class.

He had to start race one on Saturday from 19th at the back of the grid because he had not put in a qualifying lap. He came home a decent second in class after some great battles in the race.

In race two he started sixth on the grid and finished fifth overall and fourth in class.

Sunday’s first race saw him sixth on the grid and going on to finish seventh overall and fifth in class.

He started the second race sixth but, while battling for the lead, a tyre lost grip on the last lap and he finished seventh overall and fifth in class.

The weekend did not start well but, thanks to the Bemsee hire bike, turned out okay.