BSB: Castle Combe Grand National preview

Many of the country's top superbike teams and riders are set to battle it out for supremacy in the Superbike Grand National meeting which takes place at Castle Combe near Chippenham over the weekend of September 25th and 26th. With the...

Many of the country's top superbike teams and riders are set to battle it out for supremacy in the Superbike Grand National meeting which takes place at Castle Combe near Chippenham over the weekend of September 25th and 26th.

With the British Superbike Championship decided this weekend prior, either Rizla Suzuki or HM Plant Honda Racing will be arriving at the Wiltshire circuit having been crowned champions for 2004 and these two teams, along with a number of other prominent BSB teams will be looking to round off the season in style.

The Rizla Suzuki team hope to field youngster Jon Kirkham in recognition of his efforts in the British Superbike Cup as well as another rider yet to be named whilst Supersport champion Karl Harris will make his Superbike debut for HM Plant Honda Racing when he takes to the track on the Honda Fireblade.

Honda hope to have Michael Rutter and Japanese star Ryuichi Kiyonari also in action around the super-fast circuit which has just this week, undergone some extensive safety modifications.

Virgin Mobile Samsung Yamaha will have at least two bikes out at the meeting and whilst the rider line up has yet to be decided, it is likely that Steve Plater and Gary Mason will be present at the South West's biggest bike meeting in years.

Former GP rider Sean Emmett is hopeful of landing share the £15,000 purse on offer as he is set to be reunited with the ETI Ducati Team for whom he won their maiden BSB race in 2003. The ex Shakey Byrne F02 will suit the Londoner who has a point to prove after a disastrous year on the MonsterMob F04.

There's a chance of making it a truly international event with top American racer and factory Yamaha star Jason DiSalvo who is looking to make his superbike debut in the UK. The 20 year old New Yorker spent a couple of seasons racing in Europe before returning stateside and with the great Fast Freddie Spencer as his coach, DiSalvo has shown a real turn of speed in the AMA Championships this year for Graves Yamaha.

As well as the two 15 lap feature races, there are two races for the Eastern Airways Sidecar Championship as nine times world champion Steve Webster looks to increase his lead in the standings. A full programme of BSB support classes will be on offer as well as the New Era Club Championship races over the two action packed days and late entries are still available either by contacting Jim Parker at New Era MCC (01920 444205) or Rodney Gooch at Castle Combe as below.

Action gets underway with practice on Saturday from 08.30 and on Sunday from 09.00 with the first race scheduled for 10.45. Adult admission is £8.00 on Saturday (concessions £4.00) and £20.00 on Sunday (concessions £10.00) with accompanied children under 15 admitted free. Paddock transfers are free on Saturday and until 11.00 on Sunday, thereafter £5.00 each. Camping is also available

Discounted advance tickets are available until Monday 20th September and details can be found on www.castlecombe.co.uk or by calling 01249 782417

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