DIFFICULT WEEKEND FOR KRYSTAL AT MONDELLO KRYSTAL Racing Space Air endured a tough three days at the weekend's double-header at Mondello Park in Ireland. As the Metzeler Racetec National Superstock Championship made...
DIFFICULT WEEKEND FOR KRYSTAL AT MONDELLO
KRYSTAL Racing Space Air endured a tough three days at the weekend's double-header at Mondello Park in Ireland. As the Metzeler Racetec National Superstock Championship made its annual visit to the tough Irish circuit, the team were left counting the costs from three crashes after both riders took excursions off the track during the course of the weekend.
Lee Jackson (22) scored his best finish of the day in Race One when he brought his Yamaha R1 across the line in fifth place. His hopes of a better result in Race Two were scuppered when he highsided on the first lap.
The Lincoln rider, who has become renowned as one who never crashes, was spat off the distinctive blue and yellow machine halfway through the opening lap. But a crash just seconds earlier involving Adam Jenkinson and Gary Johnson had left debris across the track which brought out the red flag.
Jackson was able to get back to the pits in time to make the restart on his spare bike. However, riding a bike which had not seen any track time around Mondello meant the former champ could only manage a 10th place at the chequered flag 12 laps later.
"I don't know what event happened or why I crashed, the bike just spat me off for no reason," an angry and disappointed Jackson admitted. "I'm gutted because I had wanted a better result than my fifth place in the first race.
"I'm not a rider who crashes at all, but I guess I just don't like this track -- I crashed here last year as well on the Kawasaki. I am pretty annoyed about it, because I came here lying third in the championship and now I've been knocked down to fifth. I've got a lot of work to do now playing catch up, and I just want to put this dreadful weekend behind me and move on."
Young team-mate Paul Veazey (33) also suffered a difficult weekend, which began with a huge smash during first qualifying on Saturday morning. The bike wasn't repairable at the circuit, forcing the 21-year-old to take to his spare bike for the rest of the weekend. In the second session, Veazey again binned his R1, but this time the damage was superficial and the team worked late to get the machine ready for race day, where he would line up in 21st spot on the grid.
But the bad luck wasn't to end there, and in both of Sunday's races he was caught up in first corner incidents. Although he managed to avoid crashing himself, both incidents saw him forced to take to the grass to avoid stricken bikes, leaving him languishing down at the back of the pack. He finished the races in 18th and 24th spots respectively.
"I can't believe it, talk about unlucky," he said. "The first race was bad enough, I'd made a really good start and I was thinking how happy I was when suddenly there were bikes all over the place and I had to take evasive action to ride around them.
"So for it to happen again in exactly the same place in Race Two was just ridiculous. I'd hoped the races would be a chance to redeem myself a bit after crashing both bikes in both qualifying sessions, but I didn't bank on getting stuck at the back in both races like I did. I'm pleased it's all over, it's been a nightmare of a weekend."
Team owner Tony Astle commented: "It's pretty fair to say that this hasn't been the best of weekends for Krystal Racing Space Air. Paul was lucky to get up from his crashes, and Lee's was a nasty one, so I think we are all pleased they are both okay. Lee is gutted he hasn't been able to boost his championship any more, but there is still a long way to go this year, and in racing so much can change that we just need to remain positive and get working on making sure we have a stronger package for Knockhill.
"But to all of us in the team, what happened really doesn't matter that much anyway considering the devastating news about Guy Sanders who died from injuries sustained in a crash in the Supersport race. That has overshadowed everything, and at the moment all our thoughts are with his family, his friends and his team and we send them our deepest sympathies at this terrible time."