Best of British for FPR at Brands Hatch Chris Walker took full advantage of team-mate Troy Corser's second race misfortune at Brands Hatch to finish a thrilling fourth and complete a morale-boosting weekend for Foggy PETRONAS Racing. Troy had...
Best of British for FPR at Brands Hatch
Chris Walker took full advantage of team-mate Troy Corser's second race misfortune at Brands Hatch to finish a thrilling fourth and complete a morale-boosting weekend for Foggy PETRONAS Racing.
Troy had earlier sparked renewed optimism with an accomplished fifth place in the opening race of the eighth round of the Superbike World Championship. But a crash at the second corner of a restarted second race dashed his hopes of a potential podium finish as Noriyuki Haga claimed both victories to re-ignite his championship challenge.
Team owner Carl Fogarty was delighted that his riders had at last been able to inspire an enthusiastic home support after a succession of disappointing showings at British rounds.
Carl said: "Those were the best rides of the season from both riders. Chris had an awesome second race and didn't put a foot wrong as he was under pressure all the way through. For Troy to be two seconds off the lead with two laps to go in the first race shows how far we have come in such a short space of time. Troy was also perfectly placed at the start of race two before it was red flagged and restarted. He didn't get off the line for the restart very well because the starter kept them waiting for so long. Maybe he was trying too hard to make it up in the first bend when he came together with James Toseland. It was one of those racing incidents. The way that race panned out he could well have been on the podium, which would have been incredible. The result was great for Chris and for the team. Finally we have had a good British round and everyone will now go into the summer break on a high and looking forward to the progress that we know we can still make with the FP1 for the rest of this season and beyond."
Troy had been running in third place in the second race when James Toseland was forced to retire with engine problems. After a typical `Stalker start' from 13th on the grid, Chris had climbed to eighth place by the end of lap three when positions were taken for the reformed grid, with Toseland allowed to rejoin the second heat. First corner congestion at the restart - featuring Chris, Toseland and Troy - had a knock-on effect at the second corner, when Troy and Toseland collided.
Chris, ninth in the first race, said: "I desperately needed that result. The first race wasn't brilliant but the second race was! I can now go into the break thinking positive things before our next test at Magny-Cours. Our starts this weekend have done us both proud. I had a brilliant start to the second race but couldn't keep the pace and I was panicking a little bit because nothing seemed amiss. James came by me and I could see oil coming out, so that cost me some time but fortunately the race was stopped. In the interval we had a quick look at the data and virtually went back to the morning settings, with a few minor tweaks. But I was about half a second quicker after the restart. I didn't see who was behind me but I knew it was James Ellison as it wasn't a noisy bike! I also knew that I just had to keep my head down and not make any mistakes to keep my position."
Troy said: "You can never be too sure but I am pretty confident I would have been on the podium if the second race hadn't been stopped. The bike and the engine were feeling good. At the restart I was on the outside with nowhere to go when there was a domino effect at the second corner. There was nothing James or I could do about it. We were both in the corner and we came together. In the first race I was lining up Vermeulen with a couple of laps to go to see where I could take him, as I was quicker through Dingle Dell but it would have been difficult. Our bike was really not that much slower than the others and I could almost run with the leaders as I was making around half a second up through the back section. There was a slight water leak for the last couple of laps, so I had to back off slightly."