Richard Kerr and the Dumfries-based AMD Motorsport team wrapped up their 2022 Pirelli National Superstock Championship at Brands Hatch at the weekend, and they did so in fine style with sixth place in Sunday’s race seeing them end the season in a fantastic fifth place overall.
The meeting started with mixed conditions on Friday, but Richard got his weekend underway at the Kent venue with a strong fourth place overall across the two free practice sessions and Saturday then saw bright and sunny weather for the solitary qualifying session.
A lap of 1’27.710 on the factory-prepared CBR1000RR Honda Fireblade ultimately meant that the 22-year old lined up in seventh place and at the head of the third row for the final race of the season with the 14-lap race seeing Richard complete the opening lap in sixth place.
The Kilmacrennan, County Donegal rider moved up to fifth on lap three after overhauling Tim Neave and although he was briefly pushed back to sixth on lap seven, he was back up to fifth a lap later and quickly looking to advance further up the field.
The second half of the race saw him locked in battle with Brayden Elliott for what looked like fifth place, but the duo reeled in fourth placed Tom Ward and the trio went into the final lap nose to tail with both fourth place in the race and in the championship at stake.
Richard found a way by Ward to take over fourth, but the Aprilia rider immediately retaliated, which pushed both riders slightly wide and Elliott needed no second invitation, overtaking the pair of them and holding onto fourth all the way until the chequered flag. That meant Richard had to settle for sixth which moved him onto a season’s total of 197 points, just three adrift of Elliott, and in fifth place overall in the championship.
Richard Kerr: “I’m a bit frustrated with today’s result as I felt fourth place in both the race and championship could have been ours. The front three riders managed to get a bit of a gap over the rest of us but once I got by Tim, my lap times were strong, and I was confident of finishing fourth. I managed to get by Tom on the final lap but when he came back by me, it sat me up and pushed us both wide, the end result being that Brayden went by the both of us and was smiling all the way to the end!”
“That meant it was sixth in the race and fifth in the championship, but I have to be pleased with the progress made this year. I’ve had a really good year with the two wins being the obvious highlight. The team have worked tirelessly, and we’ve maintained out record of scoring points in every race all the way to the end of the season, the only team to do so and we have to be proud of that. I’ve got to say a big thank you to Fraser, Mary and the whole team and all of the sponsors for their continued, and invaluable, support.”
Fraser Dykes, Team Owner: “It’s been a fantastic season and we’re over the moon to have finished fifth overall in the championship. We came into the year looking for top ten finishes but have far exceeded that with regular top six finishes and, of course, two wins which gave us all an incredible buzz. To go from 20th overall in 2021 to fifth in 2022 shows how far Richard and the whole AMD Motorsport team have come and whilst there’s been a lot of emotions during the year with highs, lows and everything in between, we have to be pleased with our progress.”
Richard and the team will conclude their 2022 season at the Sunflower Trophy meeting at Bishopscourt next weekend.
Pictures by Tim Keeton (Impact Images Photography)
Pirelli National Superstock 1000 Championship (final standings after 11 rounds)
1 Davey Todd (Honda) 286pts
2 Billy McConnell (Honda) 273
3 Alex Olsen (BMW) 251
4 Brayden Elliott (Honda) 200
5 Richard Kerr (AMD Motorsport Honda) 197
6 Tom Ward (Aprilia) 185