Following the establishment of the Hottrax Motorcycle Racing Club over the 2006/7 winter, much hard work by Dave Mabbut and the HMRC team came to successful fruition on the Easter weekend over the 1.952 mile circuit of Snetterton in Norfolk
National Endurance Racing, April 9
A very impressive grid assembled at Snetterton for the first of five rounds counting toward the 2007 Hottrax Motorcycle Racing Club Endurance Championship, previous national endurance race winners from 2006 returned to join new teams, attracting a host of very quick riders with a background of short circuit and international endurance racing. Uprite Racing (Jason Gunning/John Crockford/Vance John) used last year’s KRC championship winning Suzuki 1000, the ex-Team Serendipity bike, to secure pole and converted this into an early but short lead over the R1 of Harvey Mushman Racing (Richard Wright/Hugh Brasher/Mick Godfrey) and GBMoto (Mark Smith Halvorsen/Richard Norris/Alex Cudlin) back with their 2006 race winning R1 Yamaha. Much work had been done on this bike to ensure it didn’t continue to eat clutches during the races, as experienced by GBMoto last year.
Uprite spent the first three hours in 3rd place behind GBMoto and HMR prior to retiring with gremlins in the engine after Crockford set the fastest race lap of 1m 9.235s. It was during this period that Uprite managed to lap the whole field; during 2006 the Uprite team often worked their 750 Suzuki up into the top three but lost out against the bigger machines at the end of the day. With a reliable 1000 this team are quite capable of winning races. However satisfying, the fastest lap might have felt little compensation for the effort spent.
Moores Racing (Tony Jimenez/Mike Eglington/Jim Agombar) visited the pits 3 times in the opening hour to sort out front brake problems rendering them in last place and 16 laps down on the leading bike. In 2006 Moores campaigned both the R6 and the R1 Yamaha machines but have decided to focus on the Supersport 600 class for this year. Their race winning R1 is still, surprisingly, for sale – contact Tony J.
Another team having problems were M2 Construction (Matthew Checkley/Doug Cannon/Neil Richardson). Having won their class in every one of the 2006 rounds on a Honda 600, their new R6 was a frequent visitor to the pit lane. It is hoped this race will act as a shake down session and any problems occurring will not reappear.
Following the departure of Uprite, GBMoto and HMR ran at the front for the remainder of the race separated by only a couple of laps, and elevating new to endurance racing Team UKRM (Neal Champion/Jon Haley) - on a Suzuki 600 - up into a robust third for the rest of the race. A real ding dong was just behind wit; last off the grid Phoenix Endurance (Shelley Pike/Pete Gibson/Shaun Finch), the ZX6RR of Kawasaki Newcastle (Andy Jones/David Alsop/Phil Knowles) and the resurgent Moores Racing R6.
This battle royale lasted the final three hours with fourth place going to Moores over the Newcastle Kawasaki and Phoenix who must be delighted with their brand new R6. Hopefully Shelley feels buying a new R6 in February was a wise investment!
The results will show four of the teams separated by just over one lap, after six hours of racing. These three teams have a lot of endurance racing experience and don’t be surprised to see any of them looking in contention for a podium place.
Another brand new 600 was the Honda of Team Viking (Paul Clarke/Crispin Albertson/Barry Salmon) which had a steady race, the team gaining speed and confidence to finish in eighth, just behind M2 Construction who recovered some of the time lost pushing in and being repaired. For much of the race Pulse Racing (David Roake/Bob Jackson/Keith Miles) led their class on a bog standard Triumph 955i until the final hour when they were bumped into 10th by the very experienced endurance racing crew of 120+ Racing (Richard Cunningham/Seam Moss/Damian Rowley) whose R1 saw rather too much of the pitlane. The same could be said of the Farside Racing R6 (Charles Van Berckel/Phillip Dennis/Chris Lewis) with far too much time spent with the wheels not moving - their determination earned them twelfth spot ahead of Ducks X Racing similar mount now with a clutch that didn’t slip.
Both young Aussie barman Alex Cudlin and professional racer Damian Rowley are on World Endurance duty this year, starting with Le Mans in three weeks' time and the HMRC circus moves to Knockhill at the end of April for another six hour race.
Overall results: 1 GBMoto * 288 laps 2 Harvey Mushman Racing 282 laps 3 Team UKRM * 262 laps 4 Moores Racing 262 laps 5 Kawasaki Newcastle * 261 laps 6 Phoenix Endurance 261 laps 7 M2 Construction 254 laps 8 Team Viking 254 laps 9 120+ Racing * 247 laps 10 Pulse Racing 243 laps 11 Farside Racing 234 laps 12 Ducks X Racing 197 laps 13 Uprite Racing 137 laps * Class Winners Fastest lap – Uprite Racing 1m 09.235s (101.498 mph) Class Results National Superproduction 1000 1 GBMoto 288 laps 2 Harvey Mushman Racing 282 laps 3 Uprite Racing 137 laps National Supersport 600 1 Team UKRM 262 laps 2 Moores Racing 262 laps 3 M2 Construction 254 laps 4 Team Viking 254 laps 5 Ducks X Racing 197 laps National Superstock 1000 1 120+ Racing 247 laps 2 Pulse Racing 243 laps National Superstock 600 1 Kawasaki Newcastle 261 laps 2 Phoenix Endurance 261 laps 3
Junior Endurance Championship, April 8
An exciting prospect of two hour endurance races offers racing regulars and trackday heroes the opportunity to try endurance racing and offers a progression route into the National Endurance Championship.
Following timed practice it was the very experienced Mark Linscott (Yamaha R1) of Team Sober who lined up for the Le Mans start in pole position with a time of 1m 13.732s. Linscott was left on the grid as the field disappeared around Richies; he was to take the lead for a short while after only eleven minutes.
The pace car appeared after a tumble at Corams on the half hour mark and many teams bought their riders in for the first rider/bike change, James Barker (Last Minute Racing) re-emerging as the leader building on the pace already set by Tim Allen (Suzuki 1000).
At the halfway point Last Minute Racing held a two lap lead over Team Sober (Linscott and Gary Bransgrove) ahead of the Extreme Bikesportz pairing of Phil Wood and Ian Walker on a pair of 600 Suzukis who eventually moved up to second in front of Team SOBER.
Newcomer, Gary Bransgrove rode the wheels off his Kawasaki ZX6 but it never had the speed of the litre opposition. At the end of two hours of close racing in fourth place were the Advance Bike Shipping 1000 Suzuki pairing of Jason Pittaway and Mike Bull who started 13th on the grid.
Overall results: 1 Last Minute Racing 91 laps 2 Extreme Bikesportz 89 laps 3 Team SOBER 89 laps 4 Advance Bike Shipping 88 laps 5 M + P Racing 88 laps 6 Moto Developments 88 laps 7 Freaks of Nature 87 laps 8 Go Fast Racing 86 laps 9 ETA Racing 86 laps 10 Dos Albaniles 85 laps 11 Rawlings Racing 84 laps 12 Radtec Racing 84 laps 13 Black Flag Racing 84 laps 14 Highside Racing 82 laps 15 Black Cat Racing 82 laps 16 Team Allez Oop-La 81 laps 17 C2C Racing 81 laps 18 MC Racing 79 laps 19 Team Issor 78 laps 20 Newlinc Racing 38 laps 21 Team Deliverance 7 laps Fastest lap – Last Minute Racing 1m 13.564s (95.525 mph)
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Words + photos – Alfonso Lygo