TYRE gambles played havoc at the NG Road Racing finale as sun and showers both hit Oulton Park for the club’s final round.
While Ricky Tarren’s team made the perfect tyre choice on a rapidly drying track in qualifying for the IMS 600 class to take pole, champion elect Max Symonds got just one flying lap in and stared from row two. But come the race, Symonds set a stunning pace on his J and C Symonds ZX6R to win by over 15sec with Tarren second. Third went to Jordan Greenshields who was tracked all race long by Christopher Sinanan, having his best outing of the year on the R6.
Via Moto-backed National Superstock regular Joe Sheldon-Shaw swept to a lights-to-flag win in the Open ranks, while Symonds was back out to take second on his 600 against all the superbikes around him. Sonny Martin was second on the road, but a 10sec jump-start penalty dropped him down the timing sheets to finish fifth as Nico Mawhinney and Ricky Elder benefited from Martin’s indiscretion.
Sheldon-Shaw chalked up a double win as he added the Powerbike victory to his Open spoils as he headed home Richard Wilson and Joe Holdsworth. AFB Team runners Chris Pope and Leigh Corfield grabbed sixth and ninth respectively in a strong field to grab the points they needed to take second and third in the 2019 championship behind the absent champ Josh Day.
Oliver Sweet took the F125 win after Mason Johnson went out early doors despite setting a good qualifying time. Those 25 points for Sweet lifted him up into equal third place in the championship, putting him on the same tally as the unfortunate Johnson.
Tim Bradley drew on all his years of racing experience to take a dominant win in the F400 class on his A and Z Taylor Racing FZR400. Behind him though Oliver Morgan-Edwards was having a great run through to second with Richard Harrison getting the better of Joe Talbot in the latter stages to take the final podium position.
Manx GP winner and 250 specialist Chris Moore powered his peaky TZ250 past the four-strokes in the Open 500 as he splashed his way around on the JL Exhausts/Silvester Services Yamaha taking the win by over 45sec, lapping five seconds faster than the rest of the field. Meanwhile, Myerscough College man Richie Harrison grabbed second despite some continuous pressure from 16-year-old Joe Talbot on his KTM, albeit almost half a lap behind winner Moore who lapped everyone up to seventh place.
Minitwin-mounted novice rider Grant Seymour stunned many by grabbing pole on the CS Racing SV, but come the race it was all about the two riders who have fought out this championship since early season – Dan Harris and Olii Warren, whose weekend at Oulton was another elbow-to-elbow scrap.
Harris was in the driving seat in the title chase and Warren had to win to keep the pressure on. And win the newcomer’s champ did, but Harris was there on his tail race-long crossing the line within half a bike length to take the 2019 title.
With a lower entry list than NG regularly sees, the road was open for a possible new winner in the Super Twins, especially after pre-race tip Paul Wardell ruled himself out with a spill in qualifying. Instead, it was Tim Sayers, who took his Priest-Bikepaint.co.uk SV to the win ahead of Richard Curtis and Dan James, the latter a regular Desmo Due runner who was having his first foray in the Mini Twins on the Stuart Hamilton SV650.
True Heroes Panigale pilot Dave Mackay took the Tri-Option Ducati to his 11th Sound of Thunder win of the year to retain the title in style. He headed home Antony White, who was having another good weekend on his 675 Triumph, and Paul Willis on his KTM.
Wayne Pither was a man on a mission after making a poor st
art carving though, and eventually coming through to second with a couple of laps to go on his 675. It looked as if his times may have allowed him to challenge for his first win, but with just one lap to go he crashed out of a nailed-on second place at Cascades.
The 700 Streetstock battle for the title was one of the tightest between Dave Irons and Simon Bastable, and Irons knew that if he won, Bastable had to be second, so Irons set off hoping his rival would be forced into making a mistake with a hot pace.
But with one lap to go it was Irons that cracked, falling from the lead as Bastable then rolled it off to tick off the last two laps while Adam Grosch took the opportunity to pass Bastable to take his first win of the year on his ADS Racing R6.
In the 1300 Streetstock category, Chris Oliver took his Garage Trowbridge R1 to a fifth win of the year and continue his perfect finish record, never out of the top four, with season rival Daniel Boucher second with David Mitchell third.
Robert Mawby grabbed a hard fought win in the 700cc Pre Injection class as he went all out with NG regulars Daniel Jones and Daniel Nelmes. The three were separated by less than a second at the line but Mawbey drafted through on the last lap on his racing Lines Derby R6 for top honours.
The Formula Prostocks Bandit Challenge runs a BSB style Showdown and it was the perfect climax with defending champ James McHardy on the European Vacuum Drainage Suzuki and Harley Prebble with his Redneck Racing GSF left to duke it out. Prebble was 15 points adrift so needed both wins to keep his hopes alive while McHardy could survive with two seconds. And while McHardy was kicked out of the seat in race two, a pair of seconds behind double-winner Prebble was enough for another Bandit crown.
In FP1, Nick Allison took his Katana to the win while Mark Carels-Watson took another full complement of points in the FP2 as Matthew Jones headed home Andy Bailey, Andrew Howe and Tony Hart in the FP3 ranks.
Desmo Due man Dan James continued his record of finishing every race this season, grabbing his third win of the year in the process on his Notohashi/Jim Rodger Ducati Monster, leaving Scott Wilson and Alan Ball in his wake in some of the wettest conditions of the day. Those conditions took two of the pre-race favourites, Simon Cox and Andy Blomfield, out of the reckoning, while Austin Lachlan was a welcome returnee in the 600cc B class to clinch second in the 2019 championship that was already secured by Martin Tomkins.
*Images: EDP Photo News