Eazi Grip

McAMS Yamaha dealt crushing blow for both Tarran and Jason at Oulton Park

Friday Practice

The McAMS Yamaha team made a promising start to the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike showdown with a positive opening day at Oulton Park.

After Thursday’s heavy rainfall, thankfully the circuit had dried by the time pit lane opened for the opening free practice session at 12:30 with Jason O’Halloran and Tarran Mackenzie heading out on track. Still damp in some areas, the riders took it easy in the first part of the session as they worked through a number of set-up options.

O’Halloran had looked to be on course to set a lap time to put him close to the front in the closing stages, but was held up by another rider in the final sector losing a large chunk of time. He ended the session tenth overall with a time of 1’35.387.

Reigning champion Tarran Mackenzie knew he would be on the back foot in the opening session having missed Round 2 here earlier in the year, but steadily progressed throughout ending the first practice 12th quickest with a 1’35.543.

With conditions near perfect for FP2, both riders looked to improve and instantly went quicker than their earlier times. O’Halloran worked through a number of different set-up changes and was in the top five throughout the session. However, despite improving his lap time on his final run to place fifth overall, he felt the bike was stronger earlier in the session, offering a clear direction for Saturday.

Mackenzie made a giant leap forward, securing direct progression to the second qualifying session with his quickest ever lap around the Cheshire circuit. His time of 1’34.388 placed him just 0.6 seconds off quickest man Bradley Ray.

Edwards 1902 Yamaha rider Tim Neave, running in the new Edwards English Rhubarb Vodka colours this weekend, placed ninth in the National Superstock class.

Bennetts British Superbikes – Free Practice Combined Classification

  1. Bradley Ray (OMG Racing Yamaha) – 1’33.700
  2. Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Ducati) +0.291
  3. Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing) +0.392
  4. Danny Buchan (Synetiq BMW) +0.395
  5. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) +0.506
  6. Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) +0.610
  7. Kyle Ryde (OMG Racing Yamaha) +0.627
  8. Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) +0.688
  9. Leon Haslam (VisionTrack Kawasaki) +0.754
  10. Christian Iddon (Buildbase Suzuki) +0.756

Jason O’Halloran    
Position: 5th          Time: 1’34.206

“Today hasn’t been a bad day, we’ve been working through some settings and I felt pretty decent in FP2, we made a change at the end to try something and it wasn’t quite as good but we still managed to improve the lap time so that’s positive for tomorrow. I think we can still tweak what we’ve got and I’m looking forward to getting stuck into day two. We aren’t too far away which is good as we know there are a few areas we can improve to be closer tomorrow.”

Tarran Mackenzie
Position: 8th       Time: 1’34.388
“I haven’t been here for 12 months, since the last Showdown race we had here, so this is a good start. We’ve had two clean sessions and I’ve got a good feeling on the bike. I did my best ever lap of Oulton in FP2 which put me straight through to Q2 and I did it in one lap as we had a small issue towards the end of the session, so it was a nice feeling to be able to go out there and push like that. It puts us in a good way for the rest of the weekend, I surprised myself if I’m being honest as I thought we’d have a more difficult day.”

Tim Neave
Edwards 1902 Superstock – Pos: 9th 
“I’m reasonably happy with how today went but I feel there’s definitely room for improvement. The bike feels good, but there are certain areas where we can make a step forward so we’ll look at what we can change overnight and have another go tomorrow for Qualifying and the first race.”

Steve Rodgers
Team Principal
“It’s been a productive day, Jason’s side of the garage were able to work through a few options and find a bit of a direction for Saturday, all while being quite close to the front so that’s really encouraging. Tarran was really impressive, to do his best ever lap of Oulton Park after 12 months away when everyone else has a full race weekend here under their belt extra is really promising, so it’ll be interesting to see what he can do on Saturday.”

Saturday Race One

McAMS Yamaha were dealt a crushing blow as the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship Showdown got underway at Oulton Park with Jason O’Halloran knocked off by another rider while in second place on the final lap of the opening race. Reigning championship Tarran Mackenzie crashed out in the late stages as he chased down the podium pack.

Things were looking promising for the defending champions after O’Halloran secured a front row start for the weekend’s first race in third with Mackenzie fifth on the second row.

O’Halloran got another of his lightning starts to lead at the first corner and as the order settled in the opening stages found himself second behind Bradley Ray. A move from Tommy Bridewell pushed him back to third but he remained in touch with the Ducati rider. While Ray had managed to get away at the front, O’Halloran was looking strong for a move into second place on the final lap of the race when Peter Hickman clattered into the side of him at Druids Corner catapulting him out of the race. O’Halloran was up and OK, but frustrated with the valuable points lost.

Tarran Mackenzie got a strong launch initially, but was boxed in at the first corner and lost a few places. Fighting through, the reigning champion was one of the quickest riders on the track as he closed down on the leading quartet but tucking the front at Shell Oils Hairpin he crashed out of contention unhurt.

Tim Neave fought back from a tricky qualifying in the National Superstock race, starting 14th on the Edwards 1902 Yamaha he fought through to eighth place in the race.

In some consolation, with Hickman excluded from the race and handed a three place grid penalty O’Halloran will now start tomorrow’s second race from pole position with Mackenzie on the second row in sixth.

O’Halloran is now 38 points behind Ray in the championship charge and Mackenzie 55 points behind.

Jason O’Halloran    
Qualifying: 3rd
Race 1: DNF
Championship: 2nd (1048 points)

“I’m disappointed, we’ve worked all year for this and someone that’s not even in it has just absolutely cleaned me out. I didn’t see him, I didn’t hear him I just got hit really hard into Druids. Physically I’m alright, the bike is bent in half so the boys have got a big job on tonight. I’m gutted, I was lining Tommy up for a pass into the last turn, it should have been 20 points for us and now we are a pretty big chunk behind. I’ve worked my balls off all year for this and I’ve been taken out just like that. I felt like I was riding really well, we did a couple of 1’33s in the race which I was really happy about and I had the pace to match Tommy, Brad had a bit more but I definitely had enough for second so I’m sure we’ll be in the fight tomorrow.”

Tarran Mackenzie
Qualifying: 5th
Race 1: DNF
Championship: 3rd (1031 points)

I got a really good start but got boxed in at turn one so I had to pick people off. I came through right to Leon and was in fifth place and was chipping away, making in roads on the guys in front. I was pushing hard and just as I got really good drive out of Island so went into Shell that little bit faster and it was just too fast, I commit a lot into Shell as we can on the Yamaha given the camber but just as I turned in the front locked and I went down. It’s unfortunate as I felt I had good pace and if I had had a better first lap I think I could have been with the podium battle. For me, I didn’t really know where my pace was at so I now have good confidence for tomorrow, starting on the second row if we can go with the guys at the front we can claw some points back.”

Tim Neave
Edwards 1902 Superstock – Pos: 8th
I’m really happy with today, qualifying was a bit rubbish as we didn’t get to do our final run with the red flag coming out and the session not being restarted so starting 14th wasn’t ideal but I had a good race. I ran into the back of another rider as we all avoided a crash and nearly crashed, so I was glad to stay on and fight through to eighth. We start a bit further up tomorrow so we’ll see what we can do.”

Steve Rodgers
Team Principal
“What can I say? I don’t have many words really. Jason was riding really well, looked set to at least have a go for second place and that chance was taken away by a rider, who isn’t even in the championship, barging up the inside at a really challenging part of the track on the final lap. It’s all well and good him being penalised, but that doesn’t give us our points back so it’s a frustrating day for us. Tarran was unlucky, he had good pace and just pushed that little too hard to chase the group down after a tricky first lap. There are still eight races to go so we’ll continue to give it our best, anything can happen and there are still a lot of points on the table.”


McAMS Yamaha Statement

The McAMS Yamaha team will take no further part in the ninth round of the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Oulton Park.

Following contact in an incident in the second race, O’Halloran fell from his machine heavily. While nothing was broken, he was battered and bruised and chose to sit out the final race of the weekend. The rider involved was issued a penalty for causing a collision.

During the same race, Tarran Mackenzie fell from his machine at Hizzy’s chicane and was struck by another rider while on the track. He sustained a suspected broken femur and was transferred to hospital in Stoke for further assessment.

Tim Neave finished ninth in the second National Superstock race on the Edwards 1902 Yamaha.

The team will be making no further comment at this time.

Update: Tarran Mackenzie has had his broken femur confirmed and unfortunately will not be racing again this season. He is due in surgery today (Monday 26th September).

Posted on Monday, September 26th, 2022 in News

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