Richard Kerr put in two brilliant rides at Donington Park at the weekend with the AMD Motorsport rider claiming third and fourth place finishes in round three of the Pirelli National Superstock Championship. Sunday’s third place was his maiden podium in the class and helped him move up to seventh place overall in the current standings.
Having competed at the circuit recently, Richard used that to great effect right from the word go and although twelfth quickest in free practice was a promising start, there was plenty more to come. Indeed, a superb performance in qualifying saw him take a career-best fifth with a time of 1’07.287s on the Honda Fireblade putting him in the middle of the second row.
Making full use of his grid position, Richard completed the opening lap of Saturday’s 20-lap race in fourth place and although he was briefly pushed back to fifth, this became third on lap four when Lewis Rollo and Billy McConnell crashed out in front of him. However, lap ten saw the race stopped due to an incident and it was re-started over the shorter distance of eight laps.
Another good start put him into fifth and for the remainder of the race, he battled for a podium position. In the end, he had to settle for the fifth place, but he took the chequered flag just over half a second adrift of race winner Brayden Elliott.
With the fourth fastest lap of the race and then quickest in Sunday morning warm-up, confidence was high as he started Sunday’s 20-lap encounter again from the second row. Fifth on the opening lap, a safety car period quickly followed but when racing resumed, Richard was quickly up to third and although championship leader Tim Neave pushed him back to fourth on lap seven, he remained within a second of the race leader Davey Todd.
On lap 16, the gap was just 0.8s and a lap later, Richard moved back into third position, and he comfortably held on to the position to take a superb podium finish. The weekend’s results moved him on to a total of 42 points and up to seventh overall in the standings after the first three rounds.
Richard Kerr: “It’s been a great weekend and with this being my second year in the class, these results were my target at the beginning of the season and in line with where I want and expect to be. We had some great assistance this weekend from Simon King and made good strides forward with the bike, primarily with the electronics and that allowed me to ride the bike in the manner I wanted so, straightaway, I felt confident with the bike and that could be seen in the lap times.”
“With the exception of one corner, exiting Coppice, I felt comfortable with the bike and although the gap to the leader got up to a second in race once, I got it back down to 0.6s by the end and was getting stronger all the time so if it had been the full 16 laps, I think a podium could have been possible. To then go out and achieve that in the second race was fantastic and there wasn’t much between any of us. None of it would have been possible without Fraser and Mary Dykes and all the team sponsors so a massive thank you to them. Let’s hope the podium is first of many!”
Fraser Dykes, Team Owner: “I was in Seville earlier in the week watching my beloved Rangers lose in the Europa League final which was my biggest disappointment ever so to finish third and fourth this weekend and take our first ever BSB podium goes a long way to making up for that. It makes all the hard work worthwhile, and we’ve made leaps and bounds with the bike this weekend and getting rid of the brakes issues we’ve been plagued with since last season has made such a difference. To come from nothing to a podium finish as an achievement to be proud of.”
Round four of the series takes the team to their local round at Knockhill, near Dunfermline on June 17-19.
Pictures by Tim Keeton – Impact Images Photography
Pirelli National Superstock Championship standings (after three rounds)
- Tim Neave (Yamaha) 105pts
- Brayden Elliott (Honda) 86
- Davey Todd (Honda) 73
- Billy McConnell (Honda) 51
- Tom Ward (Aprilia) 51
- Alex Olsen (BMW) 44
- Richard Kerr (AMD Motorsport Honda) 42