Gillan rides his luck to take lead of Masters Superbike Cup Championship
Despite a crash in the first race of the latest rounds of the Masters Superbike Cup Championship, Claremorris based racer Michael Gillan picked himself and bike up, dusted off his 170bhp Suzuki GSXR-1000 K6 and then managed two podium finishes to take the lead in the series.
Hosted at Mondello Park racing circuit, the meeting held at the weekend of 15/16 July marked the 100th round since the Masters Superbike Cup Championship was established in 2010.
In his own words Michael explained was happened over the eventful race programme at the County Kildare track.
“Went out for the first qualifying but the session was red flagged on the first lap due to rain, and was held off for ten minutes until the track dried out. A good start of fourth place on the grid with only 0.01 of a second between third and me. The bike was handling better after a few adjustments made earlier.”
“Got off to a good start in Race 1 from the line and managed to keep with the pro riders for a lap and a half. Halfway through the second lap Championship leader Andrew Murphy crashed at turn three but then a few seconds later, I lost the front end and crashed.
After the toss, I lost confidence in the bike and replaced the front tyre then went into Race 2. Had a good start again and was two seconds ahead of my nearest contender Ray O’Neill for second place, but my pace wasn’t fast enough and Ray past me on lap three. With loss of confidence I was falling further back. I tried to push on but nearly high-sided out of turn 5. I had to settle for third as I couldn’t afford to lose any more points.
In preparation for Race 3, I changed the suspension back to the previous setting, and after good start I managed to keep with the pro riders for about a lap but again was struggling with rear grip and couldn’t hold the pace. Somehow I managed to keep Ray at bay, keeping him behind to finish second.”
In the Championship standings Michael now heads the table with 167 points, 7 ahead of Ray O’Neill and 10 points up on Andrew Murphy.
Michael wishes to thank sponsors, supporters and members of Team Gillan Racing including Lucy, Mark, Adrian, Alan, Deborah and Kevin and also to www.irishmotorsportsnews.com, Fleet Transport and Murphy Sandblasting Services. Rounds 13, 14 & 15 of the Masters Superbike Championship will be held at Mondello Park, National Circuit on August 5th & 6th.
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