BSB: Stobart Honda Thruxton summary

BIRD DEMANDS RESULTS AFTER THRUXTON Stobart Honda team boss Paul Bird has demanded a massive improvement all round after his team's disappointing results at Thruxton this weekend. Despite Jeremy McWilliams overcoming a race one crash to...


Stobart Honda team boss Paul Bird has demanded a massive improvement all round after his team's disappointing results at Thruxton this weekend.

Despite Jeremy McWilliams overcoming a race one crash to post a top ten placing in the second race at round two of the Bennett's British Superbike Championship, the Penrith businessman, who has masterminded four domestic titles for his team, wasn't happy.

"That's two meetings whereby we have underachieved and it's simply not acceptable for a team with our reputation" fumed Bird. "I need to see some positives over the next couple of meetings now otherwise there'll be some big changes, I promise" he continued. "We should be up there battling for race wins and podiums instead of just scraping into the points like we are doing at present. To say I'm unhappy is a massive understatement and things will have to improve from now on."

Having celebrated his 41st birthday during the week, Ulsterman McWilliams was hoping to party in style by kick-starting his season after problems at Brands Hatch over Easter but gremlins during qualifying relegated him down the grid and onto row five.

But any hopes of glory ended before he'd even completed a lap when the rear wheel broke away accelerating out of the Club Chicane, unceremoniously dumping McWilliams on the track. However, the former GP winner took to his spare machine for race two and ended up in ninth place at the flag after a gutsy ride around the fast and bumpy airfield circuit which he'd never raced on before.

"In the first race something went wrong with the rear end but I'm not sure what meaning I had to run my number two bike in race two which wasn't set up perfectly. To be fair we haven't really ran that bike a lot and the biggest problem for me in the second race was trying to get grip. We're testing at Oulton Park later this week so we'll see what happens there" said McWilliams.

Meanwhile team-mates Gary Mason and Michael Laverty also suffered with set up problems during the weekend but both recorded disappointing finishes aboard the Mob, VK and Vent Axia supported Fireblades.

25 year old Mason scored more points for the team with 12th in race one followed by 13th in race two whilst 23 year old Laverty ended up in 15th and 17th place respectively for the Paul Bird Motorsport Team.

Reflecting on his woes during qualifying, Mason commented: "The bike was definitely better during the races but I ended up in a battle for the lower leaderboard placings. It's frustrating because we are not yet in a position to get to the front like we'd hoped" said the Lichfield rider.

Laverty meanwhile was upbeat despite his lowly placings: "The first race wasn't so bad but I was so far down the grid I couldn't get away with the faster riders. In the second race I messed my start up when I nearly ran into someone then I just got stuck with the slower riders and couldn't get past. I had a good dice with Gary, Steve Plater and John Reynolds in the first race and learned a lot from riding with them and it's just a shame I didn't get the chance again in race two" said the young Ulsterman.

The next round of the Championship takes place at Mallory Park, Leicestershire in two weeks time on April 23/24th but prior to that, a BSB test session is planned at Oulton Park later this week whereby the team is hoping to make the strides forward as demanded by the boss.

Superbike Race One Result
1, Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) 28m05.231s, 2, Michael Rutter (Honda) +9.672s, 3, Gregorio Lavilla (Ducati) +12.111s, 4, Leon Haslam (Ducati) +15.791s, 5, Sean Emmett (Yamaha) +15.817s, 6, Karl Harris (Honda) +17.628s, 7, Scott Smart (Suzuki) +18.340s, 8, Dean Thomas (Kawasaki) +18.615s, 9, Glen Richards (Kawasaki) +25.311s, 10, Tommy Hill (Yamaha) +32.655s--. 12, Gary Mason (Stobart Honda) +45.149s-- 15, Michael Laverty (Stobart Honda) +46.296s.

Superbike Race Two Result
1, Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) 28m45.734s, 2, Gregorio Lavilla (Ducati) +0.444s, 3, Michael Rutter (Honda) +1.298s, 4, Sean Emmett (Yamaha) +7.055s, 5, Glen Richards (Kawasaki) +8.896s, 6, Dean Thomas (Kawasaki) +9.066s, 7, Leon Haslam (Ducati) +9.188s, 8, Karl Harris (Honda) +10.392s, 9, Jeremy McWilliams (Stobart Honda) +21.668s, 10, Steve Plater (Kawasaki) +21.833s --13, Gary Mason (Stobart Honda) +23.462s -- 17, Michael Laverty (Stobart Honda) +31.019s.

Superbike Championship Standings (after Round 4)
1, Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) 100pts
2, Gregorio Lavilla (Ducati) 72pts
3, Michael Rutter (Honda) 69pts
4, Sean Emmett (Yamaha) 46pts
5, Glen Richards (Kawasaki) 43pts
6, Karl Harris (Honda) 38pts
7, Leon Haslam (Ducati) 35pts
8, Dean Thomas (Kawasaki) 31pts
9, Scott Smart (Suzuki) 17pts
10, John Reynolds (Suzuki) 16pts
10, Tommy Hill (Yamaha) 16pts
10, Jeremy McWilliams (Stobart Honda) 16pts
11, Gary Mason (Stobart Honda) 13pts
16, Michael Laverty (Stobart Honda) 3pts


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About this article
Series Other bike
Drivers Jeremy McWilliams , Gregorio Lavilla , Glen Richards , Michael Rutter , Gary Mason , Scott Smart , Sean Emmett , Dean Thomas , Steve Plater , John Reynolds , Leon Haslam , Tommy Hill , Karl Harris , Michael Laverty , Ryuichi Kiyonari , Paul Bird
Teams Williams