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Eazi Grip

Jason O’Halloran does the treble at Thruxton for McAMS Yamaha

Friday

O’Halloran sets the bar on fast Friday at Thruxton

Jason O’Halloran got off to a flying start to round 7 of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, topping both practice sessions on a scorching opening day at Thruxton.

O’Halloran set the bar high on the opening day of action as he flew to the top spot with a 1:15.380, placing himself 0.192 seconds clear at the top of the timesheet. Team-mate Tito Rabat was 23rd.

Fast from the off, O’Halloran sat comfortably at the top of the timesheets in the opening practice session before going quicker in the early part of a scorching practice two, which saw track temperatures rise to 34 degrees. Knocking seven-tenths of a second off his pace-setting time from the first session, the number 22 rider ended the opening day confidently atop the timesheets.

Tito Rabat endured a difficult day as he returns to Bennetts BSB action. Trying to extract the maximum from the R1 at its dominant hunting ground, the Spanish rider pushed to a 1:17.033, finishing 1.653 seconds adrift of his team-mate but remains confident there’s more to come.

Rabat’s time will see him go into qualifying one on Saturday with O’Halloran progressing straight into the Q2 shootout ahead of the 14 lap BikeSocial Sprint Race at 16.15.

Jason O’Halloran
McAMS Yamaha
Practice: 1st (1:15.380)

“Really positive first day at Thruxton, we don’t get to ride here a lot so I enjoyed today. We know that the Yamaha works well around here so I was confident but nonetheless it’s nice to get the first day done with a good feeling. We’ve not got many changes to make for tomorrow, just some small tweaks as we look more towards the race rather than lap time. Overall a good day, in a good place and looking forward to tomorrow.”

Tito Rabat
McAMS Yamaha
Practice: 23rd (1:17.033)

“I am not too happy with today as I want to be faster. This track is very unique, so I’m trying to understand how to get the most out of the bike here. We will keep working and hopefully we can make improvements tomorrow.”

Steve Rodgers
Team Principal

“It’s been a good day here at Thruxton, we knew the bike is strong here and Jason has won five out of the last six races here so we were confident coming into the weekend. The one unknown we did have was having to use the harder SCD Pirelli tyre but that seems to work well. Jason was quickest in both sessions and by some margin in the second one, showing strong pace on new and used tyres. We are excited to see what tomorrow brings.”

Saturday

O’Halloran takes Bike Social Sprint victory with Thruxton masterclass

Jason O’Halloran gave another Thruxton masterclass as he stormed to victory in the Bike Social Sprint Race at Round 7 of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship.

After a scorching Friday, Saturday proved to be quite a different affair with all four seasons gracing the Hampshire track ahead of the final free practice session. With the weather unable to make up its mind, the session started dry but by the time riders had completed just one flying lap the rain had returned leading to both O’Halloran and team-mate Tito Rabat to return to the pits.

Fortunately, the weather held off for qualifying and O’Halloran was in imperious form, storming to pole position by two tenths of a second with a 1’14.634 with fellow Yamaha riders Ryan Vickers and Kyle Ryde joining him on the front row of the grid.

Pre-race favourite given his pole start and Thruxton form, O’Halloran wasted no time leading in the early stages. Knowing he had to look after his tyres, he tried not to pull the pin but formed a bit of a gap as the pack behind battled. At mid-race distance, Lee Jackson was able to break free and pass the Australian at the final chicane, but O’Halloran had it all in control. Realising he’d rather be out front, he re-passed the Kawasaki rider and didn’t look back, gradually gapping the field as the race went on to eventually cross the line 1.591 seconds ahead of Hawk Racing’s Charlie Nesbitt in second place.

It marked a welcome return to the top step of the podium for O’Halloran, winning for the first time since Donington Park back in May. A brace of 18 points see’s O’Halloran reduce the lead in the championship, now sitting just 12 points back from a top three position.

Saving his tyre in the early stages of the race, O’Halloran will start seventh in Race 2.

After qualifying 20th, Tito Rabat pulled in from the race citing a lack of rear grip.

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, BikeSocial Sprint Race result:

  1. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha)
  2. Charlie Nesbitt (MasterMac Honda by Hawk Racing) +1.591s
  3. Ryan Vickers (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +1.702s
  4. Max Cook (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) +1.715s
  5. Lee Jackson (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) +1.751s
  6. Leon Haslam (ROKiT BMW Motorrad) +5.132s
  7. Danny Kent (Lovell Kent Racing Honda) +5.200s
  8. Kyle Ryde (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +5.377s
  9. Glenn Irwin (BeerMonster Ducati) +5.517s
  10. Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW Motorrad) +5.819s

Jason O’Halloran
Qualifying: 1st   Race 1: 1st      Championship: 6th (176.5 points)

“We knew from yesterday we had good pace, we spent a lot of time doing long runs and I was pretty confident ahead of the race that I knew what pace I wanted to do. I ended up at the front early on and controlled the pace, in the middle part of the race there wasn’t much of a gap behind me so I let Lee go to the front so I could see what he could do, I figured out pretty much straight away that I wanted to be back in front so I overtook him and controlled it over the last few laps and managed to built a bit of a gap. It’s been the first weekend we’ve had a really smooth weekend, when you start your weekend on the front foot you can build your momentum and focus on strategy for the races. I think the whole team needed that today, we didn’t have a bad Brands Hatch with a top five but we want to win races. We’ve done a lot of work between the two rounds and come here with a better package and I feel like we all deserve that.”

Tito Rabat
Qualifying: 20th  Race 1: DNF

“I changed to the SC2 front tyre for the race which I much preferred, I had a lot better feeling on the front but absolutely no grip from the rear. It felt like there was something on the tyre, we need to look into it as I just had no grip. So we will look tonight and see for tomorrow.”

Steve Rodgers
Team Principal

“We knew Jason could be strong coming here and he’s been phenomenal all weekend. He’s been ahead of the rest of the pack all weekend and that showed in Qualifying and then today’s race – he just controlled it and took the win in textbook Thruxton style. The whole team deserve this, we’ve been working hard to get back up to the top and it feels very nice to be there, fingers crossed we can stay there tomorrow!”

Sunday

It’s the O’Show at Thruxton with triple victory for McAMS Yamaha

Jason O’Halloran gave the Bennetts British Superbike grid an absolute masterclass with a sublime treble victory to re-ignite his championship charge at Thruxton.

The Australian rider became Yamaha’s most successful British Superbike rider in history with three imperious victories at the superfast Hampshire venue.

After setting pole position, Saturday’s outing would be the easier of the three as he was able to control the race from the front. Although saving his tyre in the early stages meant he’d start seventh for Race 2. Knowing he couldn’t push early on, O’Halloran sat in eighth for most of the race, letting the riders out front battle away, using their tyres as they did, before launching his attack on Lap 14, passing rider by rider, often with his famous move at the 150mph Church corner.

By the last lap, he was ahead of the pack and cruised to victory in an intelligent fashion. Starting ninth for the final outing, he knew he’d have to do the same again only this time it was even tougher. Still seventh with four laps to go, the ‘O’Show’ pulled off a miracle as he took the lead onto the final lap to complete his third career treble.

The weekend saw O’Halloran take his win tally to 26 races, 25 on the Yamaha R1 which makes him the most successful Yamaha rider in British Superbike history in terms of race wins.

With key championship rivals suffering, O’Halloran has halved his gap to the championship lead, now just 50.5 points off Tommy Bridewell despite entering the weekend 99.5 in arrears, meaning it’s all to play for over the final four rounds.

It was a tough weekend for Tito Rabat, who only scored one race finish with 19th in Race 2.

The championship resumes at Cadwell Park in two weeks’ time.

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, Race 2 result:

  1. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha)
  2. Lee Jackson (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) +1.176s
  3. Charlie Nesbitt (MasterMac Honda by Hawk Racing) +2.185s
  4. Ryan Vickers (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +2.773s
  5. Jack Kennedy (Mar-Train Yamaha Racing) +2.807s
  6. Kyle Ryde (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +5.090s
  7. Leon Haslam (ROKiT BMW Motorrad Team) +7.259s
  8. Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW Motorrad Team) +7.407s
  9. Christian Iddon (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +7.728s
  10. Danny Kent (Lovell Kent Racing Honda) +8.021s

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Thruxton, Race 3 result:

  1. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha)
  2. Lee Jackson (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) +0.213s
  3. Charlie Nesbitt (MasterMac Honda by Hawk Racing) +0.334s
  4. Max Cook (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) +0.929s
  5. Ryan Vickers (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +1.145s
  6. Leon Haslam (ROKiT BMW Motorrad) +3.014s
  7. Kyle Ryde (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) +3.927s
  8. Storm Stacey (Starline Racing Kawasaki) +4.142s
  9. Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW Motorrad) +5.927s
  10. Christian Iddon (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +8.002s

Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings:

  1. Tommy Bridewell (BeerMonster Ducati) 263
  2. Glenn Irwin (BeerMonster Ducati) 236.5
  3. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) 212.5
  4. Kyle Ryde (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) 208
  5. Leon Haslam (ROKiT BMW Motorrad) 201
  6. Lee Jackson (Cheshire Mouldings Kawasaki) 185.5
  7. Josh Brookes (FHO Racing BMW Motorrad) 178
  8. Ryan Vickers (LAMI OMG Racing Yamaha) 175
  9. Christian Iddon (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) 159
  10. Danny Kent (Lovell Kent Racing Honda) 115

Jason O’Halloran
Race 1: 1st    
Race 2: 1st
Race 3: 1st
Championship: 3rd (212.5 points)

“That’s the best weekend of my career, coming off the back of a couple of average rounds to bounce back like this is exactly what we needed. We’ve clawed a lot of points back this weekend with pole position and three race wins which is incredible. I’m now Yamaha’s most successful rider in terms of race wins and have 26 BSB wins which is just incredible. And I’ve won eight of the last nine races at Thruxton which is another amazing stat! This is exactly what the team needed and I think we can carry this momentum forward now to Cadwell Park which is my favourite race of the year.”

Steve Rodgers
Team Principal

“Wow. Don’t doubt Jason O’Halloran! We’ve had a few tough rounds recently, the results haven’t been awful but we’ve just not quite been there for one reason or another. The boys put a lot of work in between Brands and here and we’ve solved a little problem we had and you’ve seen the result! Jason is just brilliant here, even if you do get a bit nervous when he’s down in ninth or tenth for the first half of the race! His style and tenacity is just superb. It’s been an incredible weekend and with our rivals suffering, we’ve really clawed our way back up the championship standings. There’s still a long way to go, but it’s game on!”

Posted on Monday, August 14th, 2023 in News

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