Double Victory For Smiths Triumph At Knockhill2012-06-24 22:51
The Smiths Triumph Racing Team enjoyed a superb weekend of racing at Knockhill in Scotland with both Glen Richards and Billy McConnell taking the race wins in the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship.
Riding the Smiths-prepared Daytona 675cc Triumphs and following on from Richards taking victory in Saturday's sprint race, the Australian pairing took a 1-2 in Sunday's race to move into second and third overall in the championship with more than half the season still to go.
Saturday's 18-lap race got underway in dry conditions and after a safety car deployment, Richards was able to dominate the race, leading for the remaining distance and crossing the line over a second clear of main championship rival Jack Kennedy. The battle for second saw no less than six riders involved and McConnell was able to take fourth with third team member Luke Mossey just over half a second back in sixth.
Sunday went even better for the team with Richards and McConnell leading the way from the start. The duo ended up in a battle with fellow Triumph rider Christian Iddon before he dropped out with technical trouble and for the last third of the race it was a straight shoot-out between the two team-mates. Positions changed with frequent regularity but on this occasion it was McConnell who came out on top for his second win of the season. However, with Kennedy back in third, Richards was able to reduce his championship lead further with it now standing at just 18.5 points.
Cambridge rider Mossey was able to regroup after a sluggish start which saw him down in 12th but by the chequered flag he had moved up to a fine fifth to claim 11 valuable points.
Johnny Blackshaw also had an excellent ride in the Metzeler National Superstock 600cc Championship with the Stretton rider taking third place for his first podium finish of the year. After the original race was stopped due to a combination of rain and oil on the track, Blackshaw took full advantage of the shorter race to move up to ninth in the points table.
Glen Richards: "With pole position and a first and a second in the two races, it's been a really good weekend and with 45 points, I've been able to claw back some of the gap to Jack, which was obviously very important. The weekend really couldn't have gone much better and whilst it would of course been nice to get both wins, it wasn't essential and the last thing I wanted was a DNF. There's a long, long way still to go so I just want to keep finishing races and racking up the points."
Billy McConnell: "After the disappointment of finishing in fourth on Saturday, it was important to get my head down from the start on Sunday and that's exactly what I did. We made a small change to the bike, going down one tooth on the rear sprocket to give me more drive and it certainly worked. The longer races seem to suit me more as well and with the bike feeling strong, the race win feels really good. I'm a long way back in the championship but there's a lot of races still to go so I just want to keep taking the race wins and creep up the table as best I can."
Luke Mossey: "Two top six finishes is pretty good going but I was disappointed with Sunday's race and it was the start that cost me. I was too slow off the line and that dropped me a long way back and although I was able to climb back to fifth, I'd left myself too much to do. The bike's working really well and with my two team-mates winning, I'm desperate to get up there and join them but we'll keep chipping away and hopefully get on the podium sooner rather than later."
Johnny Blackshaw: "This podium's been a long time coming so to finally get it is a really good feeling. To be fair, the bike's the best thing out there so we should be on the podium week in week out but we've had a bit of bad luck at some of the rounds, which have prevented it from happening. Everything's come together this weekend though so, hopefully, this is the shape of things to come."
Rebecca Smith, Team Manager: "It's been a brilliant weekend from the start and although there were a few little niggles with the bikes, there was nothing major and we actually had a 1-2-3 in two of the sessions which was fantastic. It's such a competitive class and it's so hard to be up the front all the time but the team are working so well with the riders doing the same on the track so we really can't ask for anymore at the moment. Glen just got out front and did his own thing on Saturday and although Billy was disappointed to finish fourth, it gave him that added incentive for Sunday's race and it showed!
"As well as the race wins, it was also a good weekend for Luke and Johnny too and their confidence is increasing all the time. Luke put in two brilliant races whilst the podium was just what Johnny needed so it really has been a fantastic weekend."
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship race 1 (18 laps)
1 Glen Richards (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
2 Jack Kennedy (Yamaha)
3 Sam Warren (Yamaha)
4 Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
5 Richard Cooper (Triumph)
6 Luke Mossey (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
Motorpoint British Supersport Championship race 2 (25 laps)
1 Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
2 Glen Richards (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
3 Jack Kennedy (Yamaha)
4 Ben Wilson (Kawasaki)
5 Luke Mossey (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
6 Richard Cooper (Triumph)
Championship standings (after five rounds)
1 Kennedy 182.5pts
2 Richards 164
3 McConnell 129
4 Warren 123
5 Wilson 121
6 Iddon 85.5
7 Mossey 73
Metzeler National Superstock 600cc Championship (6 laps)
1 Ben Burke (Yamaha)
2 Michael Robertson (Yamaha)
3 Johnny Blackshaw (Smiths Triumph Racing Team)
4 James Rose (Yamaha)
5 Matthew Paolo (Yamaha)
6 Tom Fisher (Kawasaki)
Championship standings (after seven rounds)
1 Burke 116pts
2 Rose 104
3 Whitaker 72
= Dixon 72
5 Jackson 69
9 Blackshaw 54
Source: Cartersport Motorsport Media
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