Challenging Donington Weekend for Steve Martin Steve Martin was able to secure two race finishes at the third round of the World Superbike Championship at Donington, taking 19th and 13th places in races one and two respectively despite ongoing...
Challenging Donington Weekend for Steve Martin
Steve Martin was able to secure two race finishes at the third round of the World Superbike Championship at Donington, taking 19th and 13th places in races one and two respectively despite ongoing bike development and technical challenges.
Following a weekend of niggling technical issues and a challenging morning warm up, Steve's crew made some alterations to his Honda CBR1000 including a total wire loom change and bold revisions to alter the balance of the bike.
Whilst this rectified the 'cutting out' electrical problem experienced through the weekend, Steve had to pull in on lap nine of race one for a suspension setting adjustment, as the previous set-up revisions to his bike had had to be made to accommodate the electrical problem.
With the suspension altered, Steve returned to the track 5 laps down and completed the race distance, in order to test the changes made and gain data for set-up evaluation. These changes proved to be very positive and Steve also achieved the fastest speed through the speed trap during that race.
Race two saw Steve start from 13th as all riders were elevated by one place on the grid due to Troy Bayliss' absence following a heavy crash in race one.
With a good race start and much welcomed revised fuelling configuration, Steve quickly settled into a comfortable race pace and ran consistent lap times over the 23 lap race to collect 3 points with a 13th placed finish at the chequered flag.
Steve commented, "At least I finished both races, but not in positions anywhere near where I know we can be. This weekend has proved that there really is a lot of work to be done on the bikes to make them competitive for both Fabrizio and me, as 12th and 13th is just nowhere and not at all our full potential. We need to start developing the bikes now or that's where we're going to be staying, which is very frustrating for us as riders and for the team.
"It may not seem like it from the results, but we have actually made some good positive steps forward today and the base setting of the bike now needs refining, along with a lot of work on the electrics and engine mapping in order to achieve competitiveness with the overall bike package.
And looking forward to the next round of the championship in two weeks, Steve commented, "Valencia is where we've done all our winter testing and so we should have a good advantage there. But unfortunately, the bikes are being taken straight to Valencia from Donington, and so any development work will now have to be done on the Thursday and Friday of the race weekend which is far from ideal."