RBR: Ups and downs for Skinner and Jones in Assen

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Red Bull Rookies Cup Brits Rory Skinner and Dan Jones had a weekend of ups and downs at the Dutch round of the one-make series to come away with mixed emotions from the second round of the championship this season.

Skinner had a strong fifth place in the opening race, but struggled with damp and greasy conditions in the second outing of the weekend on Sunday afternoon – and finished the two races off keen to look at the positives and to have come away with a solid point haul.

“Friday went well and qualifying second was one of the positives to take from the weekend, and I had the pace to fight in the dry. I could have had a podium in the first race, too, but it was my own fault – I just left a little bit too much room going into the penultimate corner, ran wide, and just left enough room for another rider to get his front wheel up the inside of me.


“In race two, I don’t know if it was maybe me not working as well with the bike as I should have been. Whenever I tried to push it just felt like I was going to crash. But I don’t want to make it all negative, and we need to take the positives from the weekend to Sachsenring.”

The second of the Brits in the class, Welsh rookie Dan Jones, had a more positive weekend, taking two points-scoring finishes on only his second outing in the series. Finishing 10th and 13th in the two races, he’s looking forward to a track he knows next weekend at Sachsenring.

“The biggest positive for me was being ninth in free practice two. It felt like we had the pace all weekend, and automatically when you’re ninth you feel like you’re doing better and go forward with more confidence, especially in the tricky conditions. I just tried to keep it upright as we’ve got a lot of weekends on the bounce and I want to keep fit, so I was a bit disappointed with qualifying but knew I had more to come.

“I got a good start in the first race and only just dropped off the back of the lead group in the last three laps, and in race two we improved again and managed to stay with the battle for second right to the end. I’ve been to Sachsenring before, but we’ll just see what conditions bring!”

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer