Honda BSB 2019 Race Results

21/10/2019

Honda Racing take positives from Brands Hatch finale

The Honda Racing team are taking the positives from a tricky weekend at Brands Hatch for the final round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, where Andrew Irwin scored a hat trick of top tens aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

Intermittent weather hampered progress during practice sessions and in yesterday’s qualifying Andrew and Xavi Forés headed out to a dry track for the first time. With work to do in the first race the Honda teammates dug deep from their starting positions (Forés 17th, Irwin 19th), to carve their way through the pack into the top ten with Forés eighth and Irwin ninth at the flag.

The weather today was dry but with a chill in the air at the Kent circuit, progress for the Honda duo was present from warm-up when Irwin took 1.1 seconds off his qualifying time. Lining up on the grid further up the rankings than the day before, in tenth and 11th respectively, the duo enjoyed battles on-track with their championship rivals and made up places to cross the line with Irwin ninth and Forés 11th.

The final race of the 2019 season was down to the line to decide the championship, which thrilled teams and fans alike at the 2.43-mile circuit. Sadly for Forés his race ended early on the sixth lap with an unexplained lack of grip from the rear tyre, which sees him wrap the championship up in ninth position. Meanwhile teammate Irwin took his third ninth-place finish to wrap up the season eighth overall.

It’s been a challenging season for the Honda Racing team, but with the lows there have been many highs and plenty of positives to take away with Forés on the podium at Donington Park and Knockhill, and celebrating Irwin’s debut BSB win at Thruxton.

 

Challenging weekend for Honda Racing at Donington Park

The penultimate round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship has been a challenging outing for the Honda Racing team with intermittent weather plaguing sessions across the weekend. However, Xavi Forés and Andrew Irwin made progress during both races aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 and leave Donington Park with a haul of top ten finishes.

Showing confidence in wet conditions Irwin led the way in Friday’s second free practice and during today’s warm up, but the Honda duo narrowly missed out on the final stage of Saturday’s Qualifying by just 0.024 seconds, which saw them on the fifth row of the grid for today’s opening Superbike race (Irwin 14th, Forés 15th).

With a good launch off the line the Honda duo blasted past their championship rivals making up several places on the opening lap and breaking into the top ten. Lap by lap the Honda-men showed good pace aboard the Fireblade to eventually cross the line with Irwin fifth and Forés seventh.

Although starting further up the grid for the second race they suffered poor starts, which gave them work to do in the opening laps. Despite this, the duo managed to push back through, until the safety car bunched the group back up. With the chasing pack hot on their heels after the safety car, it was a six-way scrap to the finish line, which saw Irwin finish seventh, just 0.176 seconds ahead of teammate Forés. The results from the weekend see Forés defend seventh place in the overall standings with Irwin behind in eighth.

Meanwhile it was disaster for Tom Neave in the National Superstock 1000 Championship race, who crashed out on the opening lap fracturing his left foot. Neave also experienced mixed conditions through his sessions but was looking strong in the morning’s warm-up where he finished second fastest. The Lincolnshire lad has been transferred to hospital for further assessment to his foot.

The team will now turn their attention to the final round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, as the series heads back to Brands Hatch in Kent, in two weeks time (18/19/20 October).

Points for Honda duo at TT Circuit Assen

TT Circuit Assen played host at the weekend to Round 10 of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, as the series travelled to The Netherlands to a familiar circuit for Honda Racing’s duo Xavi Forés and Andrew Irwin from their time on the world stage.

Both Forés and Irwin showed solid pace across the weekend in all sessions, which was not always reflected in the timesheets. Sunday’s opening race got underway in near-perfect conditions at the 4.545km track and with Forés starting 12th and Irwin 18th, both had some work to do aboard the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

Forés had a good start off the line but was pushed wide going into the first corner. However, digging deep and using his circuit knowledge he carved his way back through the group to eventually cross the line fifth. Teammate Irwin also enjoyed a solid race coming from 18th on the grid, making his way through the pack to finish 11th.

For the second race Forés had a better starting position and started from the second row in sixth place. However, a mistake early on saw the Spaniard drop back and again had to make up places in the strong pack ahead. Once past [Peter] Hickman and [Jason] O’Halloran, Forés was looking strong, but with time lost overtaking his rivals, he wasn’t able to catch the front group and came home in sixth place.

Meanwhile Irwin started from 16th and made his way through the pack to finish 12th. The 25-year old is suffering slightly from a crash in Saturday’s Qualifying but throughout both races he was able to improve his lap times and start building back confidence after a few difficult rounds.

The Honda Racing team will now look forward to the penultimate round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship with Round 11 taking place at Donington Park in two weeks time (4/5/6 October).

Tough weekend for Honda Racing at Oulton Park

The ninth round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship has been a difficult weekend for the Honda Racing team and its riders Xavi Forés and Andrew Irwin as they fought to secure a place in the all-important Showdown. With the pressure on, all eyes were on the riders in the fight at Oulton Park.

Heading into the weekend Irwin was sitting sixth but his weekend was going to be difficult after having to start Race 1 from the back of the grid, but he showed good pace and qualified eighth fastest aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2. However in yesterday’s race disaster struck on the second lap when he crashed out of the running after a fellow competitors bike broke down in front of him. With the Showdown in his mind, Irwin returned to the garage and the race was red flagged due to oil on the track from his machine.

Following his decision to return to the garage the 25-year old wasn’t allowed to restart and his move was under investigation. Irwin was excluded from today’s second race, which saw him start the final race of the day from the back of the grid. Lining up in 23rd place he knew the challenge that was ahead of him, but as soon as the lights went out he set about chasing down his rivals. Carving his way through the pack and making up places lap-by-lap, he took the chequered flag in a spectacular 10th place and just missed out on a Showdown spot – he now sits seventh in the overall standings with 157 points.

For teammate Forés the Cheshire circuit once again proved challenging but his lap times and pace had improved since the second round earlier in the year. Wrapping up the weekend with 16th, 11th and 14th place finishes, he sits just behind Irwin in the overall standings with 148 points. Heading into the next rounds Forés knows the TT Circuit Assen well and also Donington Park, where at the third round he scored three podium finishes.

Meanwhile the teams’ Superstock 1000 contender Tom Neave had a positive weekend, beating his personal best times and finishing a lot closer to the leaders than in previous years. Qualifying sixth he got a fantastic start off the line in his first race to storm ahead and join the front group. It was looking like a podium spot was again on the cards, but his race came to an early end on the ninth lap when he crashed out unhurt.

With the bit between his teeth for today’s race, Neave was looking to finish the weekend on a high and started from the second row in fourth place. Another great start off the line saw him again in the front group where he stayed for the 14 laps. Crossing the line to take fifth place, Neave has moved back into seventh in the overall championship standings.

The Superbike team will now turn its attention to the 10th round in two weeks time, when the championship heads to the TT Circuit Assen, in The Netherlands on 20/21/22 September, the Superstock teams do not travel to Assen and will be back in action at Donington Park (4/5/6 October).

Home round podium joy for Tom Neave and Honda

The eighth round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship saw the Honda team celebrating once more, as Tom Neave took a well deserved third place at his and the teams’ home round at Cadwell Park, in the National Superstock 1000 Championship race, aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

With just one practice session over the weekend due to wet weather conditions stopping play on Friday, yesterday’s qualifying session proved crucial. Within the leading group throughout, Neave finished fourth fastest to take his best qualifying of the 2019 season.

In the 12-lap race Neave looked confident from the moment the lights went out and maintained his starting position of fourth in the opening laps. The local lad pushed hard to keep in the front pack and when Andy Reid crashed out of third place, Neave slotted into podium contention. Keeping a chasing Chrissy Rouse at bay, he defended his position and crossed the line third, just 0.275 seconds shy of the second place spot, to take his first podium with Honda.

Meanwhile for the teams’ British Superbike contenders Xavi Forés and Andrew Irwin, it’s been a weekend of ups and downs. Spaniard Forés made his racing debut at the 2.2-mile Lincolnshire circuit, and although making good progress from first practice through to the final race, he struggled to find a good feeling aboard the Fireblade. Forés came home 14th in Race 1 and finished Race 2 in a strong ninth position, after starting from 13th. The results from the weekend see him eighth in the overall standings, just five points behind his Honda teammate in sixth place.

 

 

Andrew Irwin claims maiden BSB win returning Honda to the top

Round seven of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Thruxton has been a fairytale weekend for Honda Racing’s Andrew Irwin, who claimed his maiden BSB victory in Race 1, to then follow it up with a second place finish in Race 2. Irwin’s visit to the top step is Honda’s first win in the championship since 2017 with the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

With blistering pace all weekend at the super-fast Hampshire circuit the 24 year-old became the sixth different race winner and Honda the fifth manufacturer to win so far this season. Starting the first race of the day in fifth place, Irwin charged off the line and was into the leading group from the first corner. Setting the fastest time of the 20-lap race on the third lap, the Irishman held his pace and the battle for the top step commenced.

The BSB fans were treated to an action packed race as the leading group traded places for the podium spots. Irwin made his move and jumped into the lead on lap 18, where he was able to defend his position with the Fireblade, crossing the line 0.223 seconds ahead of a chasing Scott Redding, to claim his first-ever BSB podium and race win.

Irwin started the second race from pole position, but after two restarts due to rain and then track contamination the race was an eight-lap sprint, which certainly didn’t disappoint. Restarting from fifth position, Irwin again went straight to the front and the podium battle was in full swing. With places swapped at each corner, the Honda-man stood his ground with the Fireblade and went onto claim second place after a nail-biting battle.

SUCCESSFUL SNETTERTON FOR HONDA RACING

The Bennetts British Superbike Championship reached its halfway point this weekend as Snetterton hosted the sixth round of the series, where the Honda team continued to build momentum as the all-important Showdown approaches. Keeping on target to remain in the top-six Xavi Forés collected further valuable points aboard the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2, while teammate Andrew Irwin scored his best result so far this season, closing his gap to the top-six.

The Norfolk track has always been a good hunting ground for the Fireblade and this weekend both Forés and Irwin continued to make progress, showing good pace throughout all sessions and today’s opening race saw both Honda’s engrossed in a battle for fifth. Swapping paint throughout the 16-lap race the teammates defended their positions to cross the line with Irwin fifth and Forés hot on his heels in sixth.

The second race saw the Honda duo line-up sixth and seventh respectively on the grid, but it was Irishman Irwin who instantly made up places as the lights went out. Leading the charge of a chasing Peter Hickman and Christian Iddon, Irwin moved into fourth place after Tarran Mackenzie crashed out on the 11th lap. Keeping the two BMWs at bay, he crossed the line to take fourth and his best finish so far this season. The results from the weekend see Irwin edge closer to the overall top-six, where he now sits eighth – just 20 points from the Showdown-six.

Meanwhile teammate Forés dropped places at the start of the race, but it wasn’t long before he started carving his way back though the pack and was soon in the fight for eighth place. Making his move on his championship rivals, Forés took the chequered flag eighth and maintains his overall position in the series in sixth place with 114 points.

On the other side of the garage, Tom Neave enjoyed a weekend full of improvements as he bettered his Qualifying and personal best time at the Norfolk circuit, with a 1:51.023 lap in the National Superstock 1000 Championship. Starting today’s race from tenth place, he dropped back into 13th during the opening stages, but dug deep over the 14 laps and made an impressive fightback aboard the Fireblade to cross the line eighth. Holding sixth place in the overall standings, he leaves Snetterton having extended the gap to seventh place.

The Honda Racing team will now head back to its Louth headquarters and prepare all-three Fireblades for the seventh round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, which takes place at Thruxton in Hampshire on 2/3/4 August.

Podium return for Xavi Forés and Honda at Knockhill

Xavi Forés returned to the podium today after placing the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 third in today’s opening Bennetts British Superbike Championship race at Knockhill. With the British weather once again throwing everything it could at the Scottish circuit with rain earlier in the day, but warm temperatures, a drying track awaited the 30-lap race.

Lining up on the grid Forés had a clear view of the 1.3-mile circuit after taking pole position in yesterday’s qualifying, but as the lights went out he dropped back into second place after Tarran Mackenzie made his way past. Dropping to third briefly as Danny Buchan moved up, Forés moved back into second after a crash for Mackenzie. For the remainder of the race the Spaniard maintained his position and a second place finish looked to be on the cards. However on the 28th lap a charging Scott Redding made his way past, and Forés crossed the line third to take his fourth BSB podium of the 2019 season.

Teammate Andrew Irwin had a disaster of an opening race after crashing out, unhurt, on the 12th lap at Turn 3. Starting the race from the second row of the grid in fourth place, he had dropped back into sixth but had started to make his move back through the pack and was up to fifth when he crashed out.

Lining up for Race 2 the Honda duo were 13th and 14th respectively on the grid with some work ahead of them to make up places. Launching the Fireblades off the line both soon made progress with Irwin 10th and Forés 11th. Wanting to make up for the DNF in the first race, Irwin was on the hunt and set about tracking down the group ahead. Picking off his BSB rivals he had chased down fifth position.

On the 25th lap the race was red flagged due to track contamination and the results declared over two-thirds race distance, which saw Irwin secure fifth and Forés finish 12th. The results from the weekend see Forés maintain sixth place in the overall championship standings with Irwin ninth.

The National Superstock 1000 race was held in wet conditions this morning and a full-wet set-up was required for Tom Neave aboard the Fireblade. Starting from the second row of the grid Neave made a strong start off the line, but had dropped places by the first corner. With good battles on-track throughout the 24-lap race with his championship rivals, Neave at one point was tenth, but pulled it back to take the chequered flag eighth. The results from the weekend see the Superstock contender maintain his sixth place in the overall championship standings.

There is now a two-week break in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship and the series will return for Round 6 at Snetterton on 19/20/21 July. The National Superstock 1000 Championship will be in action next weekend (5/6/7 July) as they take to the track at Donington Park during the UK round of the World Championship.

British Superbike Championship Standings
Pos Rider Number Constructor Points
1 Scott Redding 45 Ducati 176
2 Tommy Bridewell 46 Ducati 172
3 Josh Brookes 25 Ducati 145
4 Tarran Mackenzie 95 Yamaha 128
5 Danny Buchan 83 Kawasaki 119
6 Xavi Forés 6 Honda 96
7 Christian Iddon

Frustrations at Brands Hatch for Honda – Round 4

It has been a challenging weekend for the Honda team at Brands Hatch for the fourth round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, but the team with riders Xavi Forés (BSB), Andrew Irwin (BSB) and Tom Neave (STK) are taking away the positives, which saw all riders claim further valuable points in their respective championships aboard the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

The first Superbike race of the day was a gamble for all teams as the 2.4-mile circuit was drenched from earlier rainfall, but as the bikes went to the grid the sun was shining for the 20-lap race. The Honda-duo got a fantastic start off the line and made up places from their starting positions (Irwin 13th / Forés 19th).

By the end of the first lap Irwin was in the top-10 and had set about chasing down the group ahead for sixth place. Over the remainder of the race Irwin enjoyed good battles on-track with his BSB rivals and at one point had made his way into sixth, however a mistake by the Irishman saw him drop back behind the group to eventually cross the line ninth. Over the race distance the track was drying and teammate Forés made progress aboard the Fireblade, picking off the riders ahead throughout the changing conditions to finish 14th.

The second race of the day was held in stark contrast to Race 1 with sunshine and a dry track on the cards. Forés had a flying start off the line and made his way from 16th to 11th by the first corner catching teammate Irwin. The Honda pairing were then in the same group on-track throughout the race as they fought to break into the top-10. Bringing the Fireblades home Irwin was 12th with Forés hot on his heels in 13th place. The results from the weekend see Forés maintain sixth place in the overall standings, with Irwin dropping down to ninth place.

Meanwhile Tom Neave also had a mixed outing in the National Superstock 1000 Championship, which had three races across the weekend. Yesterday’s two-part 100 miler saw the Lincolnshire lad finish race one in 13th place, but crashed out of the second instalment after making his way through to the pack into eighth, after another rider fell in front of him leaving him with nowhere to go. Frustrated but thankfully unhurt from the fall, Neave went into today’s 16-lap race with the bit between his teeth. Getting a good launch off the line he quickly started to carve his way through the pack and brought the Fireblade home in sixth place. Neave is currently sixth overall in the Superstock standings with 51.5 points.

Round 5 of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship takes place in two weeks time as the series travels North of the Border to Knockhill, in Scotland on 28/29/30 June.

 

British Superbike Championship Standings
Pos Rider Number Constructor Points
1 Tommy Bridewell 46 Ducati 145
2 Scott Redding 45 Ducati 131
3 Josh Brookes 25 Ducati 124
4 Tarran Mackenzie 95 Yamaha 108
5 Danny Buchan 83 Kawasaki 94
6 Xavi Forés 6 Honda 75

 

Xavi Forés
Xavi Forés
#6
It’s been a tough weekend; at this kind of track I try and be as smooth and fluid on the Fireblade on my laps and we did improve a lot for the second race the set-up of the bike. I felt strong at the start of the race but I felt a big drop on the tyres mid-race and I was not able to manage until the end to defend my position. I tried to finish the race in the best possible way, get some points for the championship and try to get some information for the next races. Sometimes racing is very frustrating, you come from three podiums in a row and then you struggle a lot like this weekend! But anyway, this is racing and the positive thing is that we have good information and made some improvements to the bike, so lets start from this position for the next round and see what happens.

 

Andrew Irwin
Andrew Irwin 
#18
Brands Hatch is a round I was really looking forward to, I have been fast here in the past but it’s frustrating when we can’t get to that potential again. I believe that we have to continue to work hard and we are coming up with new ideas and we have to find the perfect way in order to make everything work. Today’s results aren’t ideal, but it seems to be where we are at the moment and I feel like I need to make a step. The first race I should have been sixth, I did all the hard work to catch Iddon and O’Halloran, but I made a mistake and I ended up at the back of the group to take ninth. We now look ahead to Knockhill and I believe we can have solid results there and learn from this weekend’s changes to the Fireblade; we had a good test there and I will work hard to continue to improve myself.

 

Tom Neave
Tom Neave
#68
It’s been a bizarre weekend really, but also a good one! We had the 100-mile race yesterday which I always look forward to and I was running really well having made my way into eighth place and then crashed out through no fault of my own. It’s frustrating on so many levels as we’d just started to understand where we’d been going wrong in Free Practice and also when you crash out and it isn’t your fault it’s made so much worse! Today as we were about to go out for the final race of the weekend the heavens opened and we had our third wet Sunday race in a row, which is annoying as we are just getting our dry setting working really well. I think the weather did play into my hands today a bit and our wet setting is a big improvement to what we had at Donington, so it’s been a bit of a learning weekend. We’re leaving here with another top-six finish under our belts and I have moved from seventh to sixth in the championship standings, so I am really happy with that!

 

Havier Beltran
Havier Beltran
Team Manager
It has been a tough weekend, we know the guys have the potential and we know we can be at the sharp end but for whatever reason it just didn’t happen for us this weekend. But it is always a difficult one, we’re always moving into different areas with the machine set-up that I guess is going to take a bit more time than what we’ve had with the mixed conditions, and I know it’s the same for everybody but we have definitely missed out and we do need to be stronger, which I am confident we can and we will be. Moving to Knockhill we’ve already had a test and got some data and understanding of the circuit. Tom has done a good job this weekend and it’s a such a shame he got mixed up in the crash yesterday, at the start of the year I said to him it’s all about finishing races and that’s what’s going to make a big difference and then start to work away as the season goes on, but overall I’m happy and we’re now in the top-six in the Superstock championship, I am looking forward to seeing how Tom goes at Knockhill, he likes it there and I think we can show off the Fireblade’s potential.

PODIUM-TASTIC WEEKEND FOR HONDA AT DONINGTON PARK – Round 3

The Honda team and Xavi Forés are again celebrating this evening as they leave the third round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship with not one, but three podiums after another fantastic days’ racing at Donington Park.

 

Taking his first-ever BSB podium yesterday, Forés started today’s first race from the front row of the grid in second place. Getting an absolute charge off the line, Forés and the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2 went straight into the lead at the first corner. Leading the pack for most of the race, the weather deteriorated and drops of rain started to fall at Donington’s National Circuit. Swapping places with Tommy Bridewell the rain fell heavier and passing Bridewell he was again in the lead, but not for long as a charging Scott Redding took over. On the 19th lap, the race was declared at two-thirds race distance, which saw Forés take second place.

 

The final Superbike race of the day was dry and lining up on the grid in sixth Forés was on a mission from as soon as the lights went out. Charging to the front once again, he was leading the pack by the second lap. Mid-race an epic battle for the podium commenced and the Spaniard was swapping places with Bridewell and Tarran Mackenzie, all who had their eye on the podium. The closing stages of the 26 laps saw Forés forge a gap between himself and Mackenzie and he crossed the line second, scoring his third podium of the weekend. After the results Forés is now fifth in the championship standings with 70 points.

 

Teammate Andrew Irwin took further steps forward this weekend; in Race 2 he finished 12th, but for the final race of the day he got a good start off the line and started to make his way through the pack in the early stages. Keeping his head down, he carved his way up the order and eventually crossed the line seventh.

 

In the National Superstock 1000 Championship, conditions for the race were tricky and subsequently Tom Neave struggled to find pace on the rain-soaked track. As conditions improved and the surface started to dry, Neave found his rhythm, but with the race drawing to an end he couldn’t improve on his position and crossed the line 14th.

 

The Championship now has a break for a few weeks and will return on 14/15/16 June for the fourth round at Brands Hatch.

Superbike Race 2
Pos Rider Number Time Constructor
1 Scott Redding 45 20:10.531 Ducati
2 Xavi Forés 6 +0.275 Honda
3 Tommy Bridewell 46 +1.523 Ducati
4 Josh Brookes 25 +1.740 Ducati
5 Tarran Mackenzie 95 +1.791 Yamaha
6 Christian Iddon 21 +2.845 BMW
7 Jason O’Halloran 22 +5.399 Yamaha
8 Héctor Barberá 80 +5.583 Kawasaki
9 Peter Hickman 60 +6.515 BMW
10 Keith Farmer 33 +8.054 BMW
12 Andrew Irwin 18 +9.693 Honda

 

Superbike Race 3
Pos Rider Number Time Constructor
1 Scott Redding 45 29:05.749 Ducati
2 Xavi Forés 6 +1.196 Honda
3 Tommy Bridewell 46 +1.779 Ducati
4 Tarran Mackenzie 95 +1.857 Yamaha
5 Josh Brookes 25 +2.004 Ducati
6 Christian Iddon 21 +9.220 BMW
7 Peter Hickman 60 +10.334 BMW
8 Andrew Irwin 18 +12.952 Honda
9 Bradley Ray 28 +18.966 Suzuki
10 Luke Stapleford 81 +21.979 Suzuki

 

BSB Standings After Round 3
Pos Rider Number Constructor Points
1 Scott Redding 45 Ducati 115
2 Tommy Bridewell 46 Ducati 109
3 Tarran Mackenzie 95 Yamaha 108
4 Josh Brookes 25 Ducati 74
5 Xavi Forés 6 Honda 70
6 Danny Buchan 83 Kawasaki 68
7 Josh Elliott 10 Suzuki 52
8 Andrew Irwin 18 Honda 48

 

CHALLENGING WEEKEND FOR HONDA AT OULTON PARK – Round 2

It has been a challenging second round of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship for Honda’s trio at Oulton Park, with intermittent weather conditions hampering progress for Xavi Forés (BSB), Andrew Irwin (BSB) and Tom Neave (STK) aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

Working through set-up proved difficult over the weekend at the undulating Cheshire circuit with various disruptions to the schedule and changeable weather. Race one took place in near-perfect conditions and was a stark contrast to the morning’s warm up, which greeted the riders with cold temperatures and a rain-soaked track.

Lining up on the grid Irwin was ahead of his teammate in 16th place, with Forés 26th, but as soon as the lights went out it wasn’t long before both Honda riders had made up places and set about hunting down the pack ahead. By half race distance Irwin had made up substantial places and the top ten was in sight. Deep in battle with Josh Elliott during the closing stages of the race, Irwin crossed the line 11th, missing out on tenth place by just 0.022 seconds. Forés also made good progress throughout the race distance and came home 16th.

For the second race of the day Irwin again pushed hard from his 13th place grid position and by the first lap had moved into 11th. Keeping consistent lap times throughout the race, he carved his way up the order to finish ninth, collecting further points towards the championship where he’s currently seventh. Forés also pushed on from his starting place of 23rd, moving through the pack he was sitting 15th at one point, but dropped back at the end to cross the line 17th.

In the National Superstock 1000 Championship Neave was also a victim to the weekend’s track disruptions, and before today’s race had only managed 36 flying laps. Conditions were declared wet for the shortened 14-lap race and Neave lined up 13th on the grid. Getting pushed back in the opening lap, he dug deep and started to make his move back up through the field. By lap six the Lincolnshire man had made his way to the top 10 and with consistent lap times he eventually crossed the line eighth. The results from the weekend see Neave hold his position in the overall championship standings where he’s sitting sixth with 26 points.

The team now look forward to the third round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, which will be a triple-header event at Donington Park’s National Circuit on 24-26 May.

Xavi Forés
Xavi Forés
#6
Oulton Park is a tough track! But honestly the second race for me was a bit better; I kept my pace and was a little faster than the first race. I struggled a lot all weekend to get traction and to make the Fireblade strong, but I do feel many positives with the bike; we’re strong braking and also turning on the speed cornering, but when I open the gas I am missing a lot of traction, so this hasn’t helped over the weekend. We now have a lot of data for the next time we visit Oulton later in the season, so we should be less on the back foot. Now we try again at Donington, it will be another kind of track for me, but it’s a track I know from the past, and I think the Fireblade will go quite well there. We will keep working and try to keep calm – when things aren’t so easy is when you have to work hard and also with the team, so lets try again at the next round and see what we can do.
Andrew Irwin
Andrew Irwin 
#18
It has not been the best weekend really and there’s no hiding from it, at Silverstone the results were better, but you have to make the most out of bad weekends and we did that! Maybe I should have been 10th this morning and got past Elliott, but I didn’t and that’s how racing goes sometimes. In the second race we finished ninth and I think that’s the best we could have hoped for today. I got a bit tied up in the middle of the race and then at the end I didn’t have much to be able to catch onto Jason and Keith, who were a few seconds ahead by the time I’d made a pass on Ryan – so it was a big ask to get close to those guys. Coming away with an 11th and ninth isn’t so bad; it’s more points and I’ve been consistent throughout with my lap times so I can’t really complain. As long as we keep making points in bad races, then with the good races hopefully we can get closer to the top six, which is where I believe we can be and we’ll keep working hard to get there.
Tom Neave
Tom Neave
#68
Today’s race was fun but I did make it hard work for myself starting from 15th on the grid! We did have really tricky conditions with a skinny dry line so you couldn’t really pass anywhere, but I did manage to make passes and work my way up through the group. Next time I really need to work on getting a better qualifying position and making my life a bit easier! The weekend was made harder as we didn’t get many laps in with red flags and bad weather, then warm-up being cancelled this morning, but I think we made the best of a bad job and were able to salvage what we could. We got another top-ten finish and points towards the championship, so yeah I’ll take that!

 

BSB Race 1 (17 laps)
Pos Rider Number Time Constructor
1 Josh Brookes 25 27:07.841 Ducati
2 Tommy Bridewell 46 +0.204 Ducati
3 Danny Buchan 83 +3.543 Kawasaki
4 Jason O’Halloran 22 +7.307 Yamaha
5 Scott Redding 45 +10.529 Ducati
6 Peter Hickman 60 +10.648 BMW
7 Keith Farmer 33 +15.758 BMW
8 Tarran Mackenzie 95 +16.147 Yamaha
9 Ryan Vickers 7 +16.859 Kawasaki
10 Josh Elliott 10 +19.364 Suzuki
11 Andrew Irwin 18 +19.386 Honda
16 Xavi Forés 6 +47.500 Honda

 

BSB Race 2 (18 laps)
Pos Rider Number Time Constructor
1 Josh Brookes 25 28:37.183 Ducati
2 Tommy Bridewell 46 +2.686 Ducati
3 Danny Buchan 83 +7.035 Kawasaki
4 Scott Redding 45 +9.370 Ducati
5 Tarran Mackenzie 95 +9.614 Yamaha
6 Christian Iddon 21 +12.572 BMW
7 Jason O’Halloran 22 +16.142 Yamaha
8 Keith Farmer 33 +16.171 BMW
9 Andrew Irwin 18 +20.801 Honda
10 Ryan Vickers 7 +20.892 Kawasaki
17 Xavi Forés 6 +44.521 Honda

 

Superstock 1000 Race (14 laps)
Pos Rider Number Time Constructor
1 Richard Cooper 47 24:29.311 Suzuki
2 Taylor Mackenzie 77 +0.148 BMW
3 Alex Olsen 75 +0.683 BMW
4 Lee Jackson 14 +4.309 Kawasaki
5 Billy McConnell 3 +15.042 Suzuki
6 Luke Hedger 12 +24.909 Kawasaki
7 Lewis Rollo 8 +25.420 Aprilia
8 Tom Neave 68 +27.602 Honda

 

POINTS ALL-ROUND FOR HONDA AT SILVERSTONE – Round 1

Honda’s British Superbike team is leaving the opening round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Silverstone positive after the weekend, which saw all riders score points across the Superbike and Superstock classes, aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.

Glorious conditions greeted the championship across the Easter Bank Holiday weekend and fans were treated to close racing action across all classes, especially in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship which saw the top-11 in Saturday’s qualifying separated by 0.360 seconds, where Honda’s riders Andrew Irwin and Xavi Forés qualified 10th and 11th respectively.

Making his BSB debut this weekend Forés made progress throughout each session aboard the Fireblade. Today’s opening race of the day saw the Spaniard finish tenth, but it was during the final race he really found his feet. Dropping back places in the opening stages of the race to 14th, Forés fought back and made his charge through the group ahead. Carving his way through the pack he eventually crossed the line eighth and leaves the opening round ninth in the overall championship standings.

Teammate Irwin also enjoyed a solid weekend with great pace throughout all sessions and finished the first race of the day sixth, just 0.731 seconds from fifth place. The last race saw Irwin penalised on lap 12, after an on-track incident while running fifth. Taking the penalty lane in superb style, Irwin had already begun his charge back up the places to make up lost ground. Fighting hard he crossed the line seventh, where he also sits in the overall standings.

In the National Superstock 1000 Championship Honda made its return to the series this weekend in fine style with Tom Neave. With a two-part 100-mile race yesterday, Neave scored two eighth-place finishes, and during today’s race dug deep and was well in the mix with his Superstock rivals. Making up places the Lincolnshire lad came home sixth and is also sixth in the championship standings.

The team will now prepare for an official BSB test this Thursday (25 April) at Oulton Park, before the second round of the championship at the Cheshire circuit on 4/5/6 May

#6

Xavi Forés

I have had so much fun this weekend; there have been a lot of riders in such a close gap. I enjoyed a lot especially the second race and we definitely made a huge step forward, it was a shame starting from the back as I lost many places and I went wide many times in order to make up the gap to the front group. In the end I was able to have a good pace, which wasn’t so far from the top group, so this means we made a good improvement and I am happy for that, because it’s not been an easy weekend for me. I had to understand many things over the weekend; it was like going back to school! It’s quite different to the world championship and I have had to learn, but I am happy leaving with the result from the second race, we closed the gap and I am looking forward to the second round.

#18

Andrew Irwin

The races today have been really positive and I think from last year I have definitely taken a step forward in my riding, I put a lot of effort in over the winter and I think it is paying off. Sixth and seventh in the first weekend is positive and I know we’ll continue to take steps forward, of course the second race I feel could have been a lot better but we got the penalty lane and I committed to it! I tried to get around it as fast as I could not to lose any time, but when you go too hard sometimes you wreck the tyre and that’s what happened, and by the time the safety car came round we didn’t have anything to give back. But you know this is racing and I look forward to Oulton and getting a good test under our belts on Thursday.

#68

Tom Neave

It’s been a really good solid weekend and we’ve gone faster in each session, we’ve also been consistent throughout. I was happy to get some points on the table without making any mistakes in the races and I was getting stronger towards the end. I need to work on being less hesitant at the start to get stuck in nice and early in order to get a good position. We’re in a good place and I am looking forward to Oulton Park, I think the layout of the circuit will suit the Honda a lot more and I can’t wait to get there now.