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NG Road Racing... Anglesey Race Report

Wednesday August 14, 2019 at 11:32am
As ever the defining feature of a race meeting at Anglesey can be the weather, and this, the sixth round of the 2019 NG Road Racing series was no different. Saturday dawned with the predicted weather that had the Coastal circuit being lashed with rain and buffeted with gusts of upwards forty miles per hour. After consultation the riders ventured out on track for free practice and reports came in that conditions were “…..not too bad”.

By the time timed qualifying was due the circuit was starting to dry, undoubtedly helped be the prevailing winds. Riders, marshals and organisers manfully managed the conditions all day with some very changeable weather. There are always riders that revel in these sorts of conditions, and Olii Warren, James McHardy, Jon Wright, Robert Varey, Owen Hunt and Dave Mackay mastered them better than most, with Warren hitting lean angles on his SV650 that defied belief.

Some of the hardest working people of the day were the various teams tyre men/women with reports of fifteen changes of wheels and tyres over the day!! Reports from the garages of being caught with the wrong set up was par for the course.

The winds abated on Sunday, and we even had a few sunny spells. That saw speeds increase, lap times quicken and even a few new lap records set, including the Suzuki Bandits with James McHardy and Simon Bastable in the Streetstock and Jon Wright in the pre injection. For every positive story there are the negatives too, and Harley Prebble, Jason Hill and William Holland all crashed out whist leading their respective classes…..ouch !

After all was said and done there were pretty much smiles all round the paddock and garages at the end of the weekend with this Anglesey Coastal circuit layout a favourite for many. Now with just two meetings left at Castle Combe and Oulton Park the mathematicians amongst you will be aware that there are now just 100 points available for the bid for championship glory (75 at Combe and 25 at Oulton). Amazingly some championships have already been secured, but many have just a handful of points separating the top runners…… it’s going to be a great run into the end of the season.

……..but before I get ahead of myself, let’s take a look at all the action from this weekend class by class.

Formula 125 | Backed by Steve Lynham Motorcycles

Sean Able continued his winning ways on the Hire Standards Ltd 125 Aprilia in the F125 as he took two unchallenged wins of Saturday and Sunday morning after setting pole. Sunday afternoon though saw the youngster crash out of the lead at Rocket in the later stages of the race. The good news was that he was later seen walking out of the medical centre with a wry grin on his face.

Formula 400 | Backed by A and R Racing Spares

Tim Bradley doesn’t seem to worry too much about timed qualifying, happy to do just enough to see him on the front couple of rows on his A and Z Taylor FZR as Jay Able and Finlay Arscott set the pace. Come the race though we see a different Bradley as he swept to three more convincing wins making it now 14 wins from 18 starts in 2019. Sunday mornings damp track saw Jay Able pressure the defending champ right up until the latter stages though when Bradley popped in two fastest laps to break the youngsters challenge. Dan Hanby has elevated himself up to third in the championship chase after a stunning ride though from the back of the grid to take fourth.

500cc Open | Backed EDP Photo News

Scott Larkin mastered the drying conditions best for the opening 500 Open race as he took his Titan Beds CB500 to the win over the returning Simon Gates. Gates a former championship front runner in the F400 and Open classes has not been able to commit to a full season for a number of years now but has never lost the know-how to ride. He proved it again here wining both the 500 races on Sunday on his GNG Racing CB500, both times over Larkin. It is amazing to think that 16 year old Bradley Richman still leads this championship after moving into the 600 series three rounds back!!. No one has strung a consistent run together to close his series lead down.

600cc Open | Backed by IMS Ltd

No matter the condition it was Anglesey lover Robert Varey that did the winning. The 22-year-old revelled in wet, damp and dry. The Team 808 R6 Racing rider Varey headed home 600cc new boy Jaques Foley who has moved from his Kramer to a ZXR 600 and current series leader Max Symonds in race one, race two saw Symonds and Foley swap places many time before crossing the line in that order. Owen Hunt made another of his now customary great starts but ran wide at Church dropping him down to eighth, on his fight-back towards the sharp end he collided with newcomer Luke Welsh who had been in fourth. Unfortunately the impressive newcomer parted company from his Yamaha as Hunt took the place from him. Third time out Varey had another seemingly comfortable win over Symonds and Hunt who finally got to step on the podium.

Open | Backed by Phoenix Motorcycles

With Josh Day’s R1 still in bits after his big get-off at Pembrey the Dayo Race Team wheeled out his sponsors spare 959 Panigale to keep his points tally ticking over. Not only did he manage to do that but he managed to grab three wins as Chris Barnes, Richard Wilson, Chris Pope, Allister Haynes and Dave Mackay were left in his wake. If Days’ rides were impressive against the out and out Superbikes then so too were Robert Varey’s who picked up two podiums and a fourth place on his R6…… and that fourth place was after he had missed the call to the grid forcibly being made to start from the back of the grid. He set the second fastest lap of the race (behind Day’s) as he fought his way through the pack, missing out on a podium by just 1.3 seconds…… this lad deserves some support. Max Symonds recovered after his ZXR went sick in race two to pick up enough points to hang on to third in the season long championship.

Powerbike | Backed by Bluebell Lakes

Again it was all about defending champion Josh Day who has now racked up twelve wins from the eighteen rounds. As I have already mentioned he was on the spare 959 Panigale that is not even the same spec as the one the are using to great effect to lead the Ducati TriOptions series at BSB. Still he was untouchable as the S1000RR’s, Gixxer thou’s and R1 could not get a sniff of the V-Twin. Allister Haynes was having another good weekend after a troubled early part of the season, gaining confidence on his Suzuki after wild-carding at the recent Thruxton BSB Superstock round and teaming up with 100% suspension. His reward was a hard-earned podium on the machine and moving up to fifth in the championship with his local round next up.

Mini Twins | Backed by

Olii Warren had the prefect set up for the drying track in Saturdays opening Mini Twins race as it gave him the confidence to push in the early laps on his Boutiqueloii SV650. He dragged out a huge early race advantage over William Holland and the rest. Series leader Dan Harris chose a dry set up which saw him languishing down the timing sheets for the first half of the race. As his set up came-to-him he picked of rider after rider and recovered to third place. Holland on his JHS 650 Gladius took the second race after an elbow to elbow affair with Warren whilst Warren got back to winning ways for the third outing as he took a few more points out of Harris’s championship lead.

Super Twins | Backed by

William Holland on his JHS 650 Gladius, Alan Gibson on his JK Tyres SFV 650 and Edward Giles on the Giles Motors ERX650 Kawasaki shared a win each. Three podiums over the weekend mean that the super consistent Giles has given himself a championship-winning gap at the top of the point’s table.

Sound of Thunder | Backed by 100% Suspension

Defending Sound of Thunder champion Dave Mackay gave himself an early birthday present by taking three more wins to add to the six he has previously racked up as he continues his onslaught on the True Heroes 959 Panigale to retain the title, and after this weekend performance it’s safe to say….job done, as he headed Paul Willis, Antony White and Andrew Nicholson home. Richard Hewitt had another good weekend (….if you rule out race one, when his bike stopped early on with water in the works !!) to elevate himself to third in the series on the big TL1000 Suzuki.

Streetstock | Backed by DTR Racing Spares and Metzeler

Jon Wright took another hat-trick in the 1300 Streetstocks on the Controls and Safety R1. One a stunning ride through from the back of the grid after missing the call to the grid, a slip up that eventually paid off as he was on a dry set up and his rivals wet as the track dried. Each time he headed Chris Oliver who leads the series. Wright is starting to run out of rounds to pull the point’s gap back after a couple of low scoring meeting earlier in the year. Early season series leader Jason Hill had a disaster of a weekend as he crashed out of the lead in race one on lap two at Church. He got up and walked away but his ZX10 was less well off. Newcomer Daniel Boucher was in the mix all weekend too and is poised to nick third in the series if Jason Hill cannot get back on track for Combe. There were three way scraps for the points in the 700cc class with Owen Hunt, Simon Bastable and David Irons going at-it big-time. When all was said and dome Hunt on his Paul Bland CBR took two wins…..Bastable one on his WSC/Wincanton R6 as he set a new lap record, with series leader Irons having to settle for three bottom step of the podium rides albeit by just a few tenths of a second each time. However his series lead on the TWR Racing R6 has been slashed to just 10 points with four points scoring races to go at Combe and Oulton !!!…..eeek.

Pre Injections | Backed by Love Life and Ride

Jon Wright took three wins on the Controls and Safety R1, each time over championship rival and current 1300 pre-injection series leader Daniel Boucher. Wright also grabbed the added bonus of a new class lap record as his performances have closed him to within just 16 points of Boucher. Paul Dyer took his AFB R1 to another good run including a podium to lift him into third in the title chase.

The 700cc class saw the NG formbook upset as Brian Greenfield took two wins on his Merlin Racing ZX6R. Brian has made a name for himself at Olivers Mount over the last few years and clicked with the conditions at Anglesey straight away this weekend. Daniel Jones did start the weekend well in the wet conditions with a win in the first outing though before Greenfield got fully into his stride. Series leader Daniel Nelmes left the circuit with a slightly reduced series lead but is still in command of the point’s table. Time for a little shout out too for Nik Sweet who took a podium in one of his best weekends.

Bandits and Formula Prostocks | Backed by Motul Oils

The Bandit series is now in the Showdown part of their season and it really is the story of two men, Harley Prebble and James McHardy. Prebble was not able to post a time in qualifying after a string of mechanical issues with both of his bikes and was forced to start from the back of the grid. Up the sharp end McHardy on the European Vacuum Drainage Bandit made the start, but was soon surprised by a charging David Hatswell and Matthew Jones. After regrouping McHardy who is the defending champ hit the front and controlled the race pace. Meanwhile Prebble forced his way up in the wet conditions to take sixth. Race two was a head to head between the top two with McHardy taking a second win. Race three and Prebble was in no mood to give away anymore points and pushed the pace out front, but on lap six of eight disaster struck and Prebble crashed out at the Corkscrew……McHardy won again and to rub salt in the wounds of his rivals set a new lap record!. True to form McHardy grabbed race four as well as Prebble again came through from the back of the grid to take a hard fought and gritty second place. Also part of the Formula Prostock series are the FP1's (pre '81 Classic F1) where Keith Higgs took two wins over John Tatham, but Tatham recovered to get a win on Sunday afternoon. In the FP2's (pre '87 Production) we saw Mark Carels-Watson take a clean sweep on his GSXR750 and FP3's (pre '95 Classic Superbikes) with Tony Hart grabbing a hat-trick and maximum points on his 916 Ducati.

Ducati Desmo | Backed by The Ducati Sporting Club                        

Duncan Baillie extended his series lead on his Saddletramps 620 Ducati after denying Dan James a maiden victory in the latter stages of Saturdays race. It was Scott Wilson that found something in his Desmo’s set up for Sunday as he took both wins in the A class as he headed Baillie and defending champ Andy Blomfield. Alan Ball had his best run of the year with fourth place on Sunday afternoon when the Desmo’s had their best track conditions of the weekend. With B class leader Austin Lachlan absent Mike Tomkins carded his first win in the 600 class. He backed that up with two more podiums on Sunday behind Peter Cooper who grabbed his first points of the year.

Newcomers | Backed by Protect my

Daniel Boucher lead the majority of the Open Newcomers but newly crowned 2019 champ Chris Oliver out-dragged Boucher out of the final corner to take the win, his third of the year, to take it by just 0.082 of a second. The Mini Twins class saw a dominant display from Olii Warren to make it a 100% win record for 2019 taking the championship. The 500cc class went right down to the wire with Jack Horton taking the race win…the 25 points and the championship. Theo Pope who had led the series going into the weekend unfortunately failed to finish.

This concludes the newcomer’s series for 2019 who only run at selected rounds.

125/250GP ACU National Championship | Backed by ACU, Dunlop and Hartsmere Logistics

Thomas Lawlor took race one of the weekend for the 250GP machines after a race long battle with Bruce Dunn. Dunn on his TZ had lead the majority of the laps but Lawlor was always able to get through the infamous Corkscrew section better, and on the last lap of the race Lawlor forced a pass up the inside to take the win from underneath Dunn’s nose. He may be a two-time National scooter champion is new-to-250’s but Lee Bamber took a great podium on his TZ. Bruce was in no mood to give away anymore points and race two that saw him card three fastest laps in a row to take the win over Lawlor with Simon Hunt third. For their final outing of the weekend Hunt set the early pace before Dunn and Lawlor eventually pushed to the front with Dunn again grabbing the win. Hunt looked set for another podium but Daniel walling set the fastest lap of the race to steal a hard fought third place and his first National podium of the year.

Former British Mini Moto Champ, Red Bull Rookie star and BSB motostar winner Dan Jones had an outing on one of the Bryn Taff Racing RS125 Hondas, and showed exactly why he is a great young talent taking all three 125GP National wins in fine style. His team-mates Bryn Owen and Osian Jones along with Gary Arden shared the podium, the Welsh based Bryn Taff Team locking out all three podium spots on two occasions. 50cc ACU National Championship | Backed by ACU

The all-new British ACU 50cc series saw a double win here for John Cooke on his 50cc Derbi. His qualifying time was almost five seconds clear of the rest, but come the first race things were a little tighter with Clive Somerfield keeping Cooke on his toes in the early laps. As the race unfolded Cooke eventually dragged out nine seconds for the win. Race two was all about Cooke though as he tucked in and replicated his qualifying dominance taking almost five seconds a lap out for Somerfield and Mark Pollit who had a tussle for second with each having the upper hand at different section of the lap. Somerfield eventually managed to break Pollit and took another runnerup spot, albeit some forty-six seconds behind.

Wiz Sliders - Performance of the Meeting.

At every NG round one lucky rider is selected for the Wiz Sliders Performance award. The chosen one gets a special set of one-off sliders made by the Wiz guy's in Somerset. For this meeting it was James McHardy got the nod with four wins and a new Suzuki Bandit lap record in what was the first part of the Motul FPR backed Bandit Challenge Showdown.

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