Jason O’Halloran took the 2017 Honda Fireblade to its first ever MCE British Superbike podium at Oulton Park this weekend despite the ongoing difficulties the Honda Racing team have experienced with the all-new bike.
Both O’Halloran and Linfoot struggled with the CBR1000RR during practice as they complained about the machine being hard to ride and feeling more like a passenger than in control, but a remarkable turnaround on race day saw O’Halloran finish fourth in the opening race before sneaking onto the rostrum in the final outing.
However, it didn’t come easy for the Aussie who was visibly bucking and weaving throughout the race as he wrestled the aggressive machine into submission around the tricky Oulton Park course.
“I probably shouldn’t be thrilled with a fourth and third, but I’m so happy with that result after the start to the year we’ve had,” O’Halloran told MCN. “We started at Donington two rounds ago and were struggling to even get into the top ten, so to be stood on the podium today means a lot to both me and the team.
“We struggled on Saturday, we struggled before qualifying and kind of got to the point there I thought I’d push as hard as I could and see what came. There’s no doubt we still need to improve, as the bike is in no way easy to ride and it’s taking a lot of effort to do what we’re doing.
“We are making improvements, at Donington I couldn’t even muscle the bike into a good result so there is progress. We’ll go and test at Knockhill now and hopefully when we arrive there we’ll be in an even better place. It won’t be long until Honda are back on top.”
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