The Vodacom Nashua Yamaha racing team left AA Kyalami in a happy frame of mind yesterday (April 1) after the opening two rounds of this year's South African Dark Dog Superbike Championship. The two races, which formed part of Vodacom Superbike...
The Vodacom Nashua Yamaha racing team left AA Kyalami in a happy frame of mind yesterday (April 1) after the opening two rounds of this year's South African Dark Dog Superbike Championship.
The two races, which formed part of Vodacom Superbike Sunday at the circuit, ably supported the top-billed second round of this year's World Superbike Championship.
The day's results also left Vodacom Nashua Yamaha team leader Russell Wood in the lead for the year's Dark Dog Superbike title chase. Wood qualified his new Yamaha R6 second on the grid for the opening race, and led from the start.
He was still leading five laps later when the race was red-flagged, following a collision between the Honda of Greg Dreyer and the Ducati of Trevor Crookes. After the restart Wood led again - this time all the way to the flag, to finish ahead of Stewart MacLeod (Suzuki) and Greg Dreyer (Honda).
His Vodacom Nashua Yamaha team mates Arushen Moodley and Lance Isaacs, took the respective sixth and ninth places in the race.
In the second race Wood, MacLeod and Dreyer fought tooth and nail throughout, with each of the three riders taking turns at the head of the field.
"Two laps from the end I thought I could get to the front and stay there, but I made a slight mistake going into the Vodacom Bowl and ended up third."
"I fought back but Dreyer had opened a gap, and there was not enough time left to catch him again." "Eventually, MacLeod and I went through the last corner of the race side by side and that is how we crossed the finish line," Wood said afterwards.
"Amazingly, the electronic timing devices put us so close together that the organisers awarded us the joint second place in the race. It was certainly a new experience for me, and exciting for the spectators," he added.
In the second race, Vodacom Nashua Yamaha's Arushen Moodley and Lance Isaacs finished seventh and eighth. Wood's first and second places on the day gave him an early lead in the 2001 South African Dark Dog Superbike Championship.
"I am happy - we are leading the title chase, my team mates acquitted themselves well and we left the circuit without a single bit of damage to any of our motorcycles," Wood said.
"We are looking forward to the next round of the championship at Kyalami on May 5," he added.