Productive Start for McAMS Yamaha at Cadwell Park
The McAMS Yamaha team enjoyed a productive day as the seventh round of the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship got underway in glorious sunshine at Cadwell Park.
The Saturday free practice sessions did not mark the first time the riders had been out to sample the Lincolnshire circuit with a three-hour test session in place on Friday evening to help teams work through some of the unique challenges posed by the undulating, narrow and tricky track.
After a strong test, both Jason O’Halloran and Tarran Mackenzie were feeling confident for Friday but still had a number of items to work through as they search for the perfect race set-up.
Blistering sunshine for the Bank Holiday weekend led to a productive day and after rounding out the morning’s session fourth despite a small crash towards the end of the session at the chicane. After FP2, he had set the eighth quickest time overall on Friday. Team-mate Tarran Mackenzie set his quickest ever lap of Cadwell Park to place 12th with both riders earning an automatic pass to this weekend’s one-off Superpole, one-lap qualifying session tomorrow afternoon.
Tim Neave also got off to a strong start to his home round, setting the sixth quickest time on the opening day in the National Superstock category for Edwards Yamaha.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Cadwell Park, SUPERPICKS Free Practice combined times:
Pos: 8th Time: 1’26.416
“It was a really good day, we worked through everything we needed to work through. We’ve got some things we need to improve for tomorrow but overall it’s positive, I’m feeling good on the bike and I’m sure we can improve in the areas we are slightly weaker tonight. I had a small slip off at the chicane in the opening session, I just caught the engine casing but everything was fine and we were able to get up and continue so that’s all good.”
Pos: 12th Time: 1’26.632
“I’ve never been happier to be 12th in my life. That’s my personal best lap around here and I’m just half a second off, there’s no hiding from this being my bogey track but I am definitely improving. The bike is working well and I feel like I’m in a good place, I’d say we have probably got a bit more in us especially in a race situation compared to pushing for a single lap. I’ve made Superpole which is good as I made my fastest lap on my own and I’m enjoying riding my bike around Cadwell, which is nice!”
Edwards 1902 Superstock
Pos: 6th Time: 1’28.985
“I’m pretty happy after today, I’m feeling good on the bike, there are maybe a few things we can improve but overall the feeling is good. I’m quite confident about being able to do race pace here, we could maybe look to improve how the bike feels for that one quick lap, but ultimately the points come in the race. Sixth is good for the first day, if we can look to qualify on the front couple of rows I think we’ll be in a good position for Sunday.”
“We perhaps look out of position in eighth and 12th compared to where we have started a lot of weekends, but this is a very unique track and easing yourself in is important. We knew the other manufacturers would be a lot closer here and the competition would be tough. Both riders have put in some good work today, Jason is trying a few things and Tarran has made a big step forward here at Cadwell so that’s promising. Tomorrow is where the position matters, so hopefully we can continue to make progress and secure some strong positions on the grid and fight for the podium in the opening race.”
Jason O’Halloran Fourth in Cadwell Park Opener
The McAMS Yamaha team claimed more important points on Sunday as Jason O’Halloran and Tarran Mackenzie battled their way to fourth and 11th places respectively at Cadwell Park.
A hectic schedule presented an action-packed Sunday for the seventh round of the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, and after a productive day on Saturday, both riders wasted no time as they looked to further tune their R1s to the winding Lincolnshire circuit ahead of the traditional one-lap Superpole.
After securing their places in the pole position shootout in Saturday’s free practice sessions, Mackenzie, who was the fourth rider to post a lap time, recorded his best-ever lap of the Mountain circuit, setting a 1:26.327, placing him ninth on the grid for the opening race. O’Halloran had to wait a little longer before taking to the track for his flying lap. The Aussie posted a strong 1:26.071 which saw him end up at the head of the third row in seventh.
O’Halloran made a strong start to the re-started opening race, which was halted on the second lap after an incident at the mountain. Settling into third in the opening stages, the O’Show pushed to stay with the leading duo but eventually relinquished the podium place to Danny Buchan at the mid-way stage. But as the fuel load dropped, the Aussie’s pace picked up, setting his best lap towards the end of the race, doing enough to guarantee fourth place, bagging 13 important points. His 1:26.166 will see the championship leader line up third on the grid for race two.
Team-mate Mackenzie had a slightly frustrating affair. Despite massively improving the feeling with his R1, the reigning champion struggled to pick his way through the pack. Running inside the top ten, the Scotsman slipped to 11th, where he ultimately crossed the line.
Edwards Yamaha’s Tim Neave is full of confidence ahead of Bank Holiday Monday’s 15-lap Superstock race. The Lincolnshire rider will line up on the second row in sixth after setting his fastest lap of 1:28.681 on used tyres.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Cadwell Park, eBay Sprint Race:
1. Bradley Ray (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha)
2. Rory Skinner (Cheshire Mouldings FS-3 Kawasaki) +0.786s
3. Danny Buchan (SYNETIQ BMW) +1.293s
4. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) +3.340s
5. Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) +3.667s
6. Peter Hickman (FHO Racing BMW) +8.388s
7. Andrew Irwin (SYNETIQ BMW) +12.418s
8. Leon Haslam (VisionTrack Kawasaki) +12.719s
9. Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing UK) +13.136s
10. Josh Brookes (MCE Ducati) +14.294s
11. Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) +14.750
Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings:
1. Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) 344
2. Bradley Ray (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha) 332
3. Lee Jackson (Cheshire Mouldings FS-3 Kawasaki) 219
4. Rory Skinner (Cheshire Mouldings FS-3 Kawasaki) 219
5. Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing UK) 199
6. Kyle Ryde (Rich Energy OMG Racing Yamaha) 177
7. Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) 175
8. Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Products Racing Ducati) 169
Qualifying: 7th (1’26.071) Race 1: 4th Championship: 1st (344 points)
“I’m really happy with today, to be honest. I thought I was going to be further back as for one reason or another I’ve struggled to find the setting to get comfortable and really be able to push on the bike, but that race was a solid run. I’ve gained a bit of confidence back, set my best lap towards the end and the front boys weren’t too far ahead. We’ve got the data from today, we’re on the front row tomorrow and I think we’ll be in with a chance to fight for the podium in the longer races.
Qualifying: 9th (1’26.327) Race 1: 11th Championship: 7th (175 points)
“It’s been a positive day. I wasn’t a huge fan of the idea of Superpole, but I enjoyed it and set my fastest ever lap of Cadwell Park, it was good fun! The race was a bit frustrating; I was in the group but just struggled to make a pass. I felt good about myself and good with the bike. We’ll work hard tonight to improve the package a little bit more for tomorrow.”
Edwards 1902 Superstock
Pos: 6th Time: 1’28.681
“Really happy with today, we only used one tyre throughout the session, so the tyre pretty much had a race distance on it when I set my best time on the penultimate lap! It’s a boost of confidence knowing we’ve got a bit more in the locker. Starting from the second row is important around here, and I’m looking forward to getting stuck in tomorrow and see what we can achieve.”
“A really good day at Cadwell Park. Cadwell, as we know, is a tricky circuit so you’ve got to take what you can around here. Jason made some big steps in the race, setting his fastest lap towards the end which earned him a front row start for tomorrow which hopefully will bring him into that podium battle. Tarran will be the first to admit it’s not his favourite track, but he’s improved massively and taken big chunks out of his lap time and is feeling good on the bike. We can hopefully make a few more steps with him tomorrow and fight inside the top ten to further strengthen his place in the showdown.”
No Party in the Park at Cadwell for McAMS Yamaha
The ‘Party in the Park’ didn’t quite live up to its name for the McAMS Yamaha team, who endured a challenging weekend at Cadwell Park to bring an end to a run of 12 consecutive podium finishes.
Jason O’Halloran’s fourth place in Sunday’s opening race would be the strongest result of the weekend as the Aussie suffered with mysterious tyre degradation in Monday’s two races, finishing eighth and ninth.
Starting from the front row of the grid in the second race, he initially took an early lead and looked to have the same pace as the front runners but as the race went on, he lost all grip quite suddenly and began to pull back through the pack. Despite some changes to the bike, Race 3 saw a repeat of the same occurrence, a strong start followed by a sudden lack of grip seeing him fall through the field.
Team-mate Tarran Mackenzie leaves Cadwell relatively buoyant. Not shy to admit the Lincolnshire venue is not one of his favourite tracks, the reigning British Champion matched his 11th place from race one in the second outing and tenth in race two, posting competitive lap times throughout to show a marked improvement at the notoriously tricky circuit.
Despite the tough weekend, while O’Halloran relinquishes the overall series lead to Yamaha rival Bradley Ray, he still leads on the vital podium points for the showdown with two more than the OMG Yamaha rider. Mackenzie remains seventh in the championship eight points ahead of Kyle Ryde in eighth so is hopeful of securing his Showdown position at Snetterton in two weeks time.
It was a tough weekend for Lincolnshire’s Tim Neave too, taking 11th on the Edwards 1902 Yamaha in the National Superstock class after running off track while fighting for fifth position.
The team will now look to regroup ahead of Round 8 of the championship in Norfolk in two weeks’ time.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Cadwell Park, Race 2 result:
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Cadwell Park, Race 3 result:
Bennetts British Superbike Championship standings:
Race 1: 4th
Race 2: 8th
Race 3: 9th
Championship: 2nd (359 points)
“It’s been a difficult weekend for us. It was bound to come at some point as we’ve had a really good run of wins and podiums and a lot of tracks we’ve been to we’ve been super strong. We came here and it’s just not gone our way, we’ll have to look at what happened as in both races today I had issues with the rear tyre and that’s not something we usually have issues with, so we’ll look into it, see what we can find and come out stronger at Snetterton where we had a good test earlier this year.”
Race 1: 11th
Race 2: 11th
Race 3: 10th
Championship: 7th (186 points)
“I had a really positive end to the weekend. I was frustrated after the second race as I felt I had a top ten in me but couldn’t get past Sykes. I was pleased to be with the next group from fourth to tenth. Starting 16th I had to come through, but I got a good start and tried to stay with the group in front. The lap times I was doing were way more consistent, a lot of them were 1’26s whereas last year I think I only did one 1’26 so I’m leaving feeling positive. 11th, 11th and tenth isn’t really what we go racing for but I scored a lot more points than last year and I’m leaving feeling positive. We’re still in the Showdown so bring on Snetterton.”
Edwards 1902 Superstock
“I’m a bit gutted as we could have had a strong top five today if I hadn’t have ran on, but that’s my first mistake of the year! It’s been a bit of a difficult weekend all round, but we can regroup and move on to Snetterton where we had a good test earlier this year so I’m looking forward to getting out there.”
“We leave Cadwell feeling quite frustrated as we know we could have achieved more. We need to understand why Jason lost grip so quickly in both races as it doesn’t quite add up, on Sunday he set his fastest lap towards the end of the race which was good enough for the front row and today he had nothing left with half distance to go. We’ll do some investigation and see what we can find. For Tarran, it’s actually been a good weekend, three races, three points finishes and still seventh in the title chase. We can now move on to Snetterton, where we won all three races last year, and look to get back up to the front.”