Norfolk riders end British Superbikes 2013 circuit with treacherous conditions at Brands Hatch
- Credit: Archant
Last weekend saw the final round of the British Superbike Championships at Brands Hatch and after a dry Saturday, Sunday saw some of the worst conditions of the year.
Last weekend saw the final round of the British Superbike Championships at Brands Hatch and after a dry Saturday, Sunday saw some of the worst conditions of the year, writes Barry Clay.
In the Triumph Triple Challenge 17-year-old Charlie King from Gorleston was hoping to overcome his recent setback and take the Cup category title for this class, which he dominated until his recent run of bad luck. King had an excellent qualifying and put his 675cc Triumph third.
With the track in a treacherous condition for his first race, lights changed saw him unable to take advantage of his grid position while of his two main rivals, Scott Pitchers was up to fifth and Dan Helyer was second battling with Phil Atkinson for the lead.
With King 11th, King's Lynn rider Freddy Pett had a third and fifth – but he had already taken second in the Championship at Silverstone.
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The result for the Cup class was Helyer first, Pitchers second while King was sixth – leaving him with a lot to do in Sunday's race.
Back in 15th on the grid for this one, the heavens opened again conditions and it meant King had to work his way through the pack on a track that would have been more suitable for ice skating.
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He got up as high as ninth and fifth in the Cup, while Pitchers not only won the Cup class but the overall race with Helyer right behind him with second overall and in the Cup.
The final placings for the Cup were first for Pitchers, second Helyer and third King – a disappointment for King but he far exceeded what he hoped to achieve when he came into the season as a 16-year-old and he has every right to hold his head high after a season that included his first national victory.
Sprowston's Jake Newstead was in excellent form and out to improve on his position in the Cup category of the Supersport series and qualified an excellent 16th. He came home 15th overall but it was his first podium of the year in the Cup by finishing third and collecting his first silverware.
Sunday was not to have the same fairytale ending when the Team Tinklers rider as he joined the long list of fallers in his second race – but did take the fastest lap for a Cup competitor.
It was another bad weekend for Norwich's Matt Layt whose tough season of just two rounds ended with a finish and a retirement. Knee surgery will hopefully see him back to his best next year.
In the Superstock 600, Framingham Earl's Richie Leech qualified 26th out of 40 but was taken out on his Tinklers supported Yamaha. Both Newstead and Leech were unhurt. Jack Keen from Framingham Earl got a late entry for the Superstocks and reached the flag – a result in itself.
Ben Field had his hands full with the RAF Marham's RAF Reserves Honda in the Superstock 1000 – stepping in for the injured Simon Andrews. He's not a big rider but came home 30th on only his second ride while more experience riders were hitting the deck.
Even the Superbike stars were going down and after Alex Lowes seemly crashed out and handed the title to Shane Byrne, Byrne went down two laps later and it all went down to the last race of the year – which gave the title to Lowes, who beat Byrne by one place.