Kerr closes gap in race for Superstock championship

Round six of the Pirelli National Superstock Championship at Brands Hatch at the weekend saw AMD Motorsport’s Richard Kerr take a brace of fourth place finishes on his Honda Fireblade to cut the gap to championship leader Dan Linfoot to just ten points.

The weekend started well for Richard and the Dumfries-based team with a lap of 1’26.880s putting him third fastest overall in Friday’s free practice sessions but with rain threatening to fall during Saturday morning’s qualifying session, he was unable to lap quicker. Indeed, a time of 1’27.259s resulted in sixth place and a second row start for the afternoon’s 12-lap race.

The rain came with a vengeance for the race with Richard slotting into fifth on the lap one and this was where he remained until the fifth lap when he moved up to fourth. With visibility difficult and with slightly less pace than the leading three riders, Richard settled for fourth but with championship leader Dan Linfoot crashing out, he closed the gap in the title race.

Sunday’s race, held over the slightly longer distance of 14 laps, was held in good, dry conditions with Richard starting from fourth place and that was the position he ran in during the early stages. He briefly moved up to third on lap four only to be shuffled back to fourth two laps later and as the race continued, he lost ground to the leading three riders, Linfoot, Alex Olsen and Alastair Seeley.

The County Donegal rider ended up having quite a lonely ride for his second fourth place of the weekend but the results from the two races meant he cut Linfoot’s lead in the championship from 21pts to ten.

Richard Kerr: “I enjoyed Saturday’s wet race, but I didn’t have the pace of the fast boys. I felt confident of running with them, but the bike wasn’t letting me due to a lack of rear grip so I was hoping someone in front of me would tip off and promote me onto the podium! That didn’t happen but with Dan crashing out, it turned out to be a good result for me. I was hoping to capitalise on that in Sunday’s race, but, like the wet, I didn’t have the pace in the dry to do any better than fourth. The team worked hard as always but I just couldn’t find the sweet spot although the gap to Dan is smaller than what it was when we arrived and there are plenty of races to go.”

Fraser Dykes, Team Owner: “We struggled a with bike setup in the dry this weekend and the team feel there is something to be found within the bike, which we’ll hopefully find with a bit of testing ahead of the next round, but it ended up being a strong weekend from a championship perspective with Richard cutting Dan’s lead to ten points whilst also extending the gap over Joe Talbot in third. All in all, we’re happy with the weekend and looking forward now to Thruxton in three weeks’ time.”

The next round takes place at Thruxton, Hampshire on August 11-13.

Pictures by Tim Keeton – Impact Images Photography

Championship positions (after six rounds)
1 Dan Linfoot (Honda) 187pts
2 Richard Kerr (AMD Motorsport Honda) 177
3 Joe Talbot (Honda) 146
4 Alastair Seeley (BMW) 135
5 Alex Olsen (Honda) 128
6 Lewis Rollo (Aprilia) 94