Round two turned into “Ground Hog Day” for Apex racing and no
one was impressed, now 50 points behind the Endurance championship leaders
after the first two rounds our championship hopes are slowly ebbing away….



Following the disastrous outing to Brands in March we had
worked hard ahead of Mallory, complete Engine and Suspension Rebuilds, the
mentorship of Mike “Get Faster” Dickinson enlisted to get the most out of
additional track time, we were 25 points adrift and this weekend we were on for
a win.


Test day was a mixed bag, the groups were large, time on
circuit restricted and traffic was a problem around the short Mallory circuit,
putting into practice everything I had learnt, I was hitting 1.00 minute dead,
struggling for space a big push was needed to drop into the 59’s. Exiting the
Devils Elbow on the stop, willing drive down the start finish straight the
front complains, big big shake, note to self increase steering damping. Adam
was in the 58’s we were happy job done.


Ground Hog Day, I mean Race day, qualifying in the Moto
Grande 600 put me 19th on a grid of 29 right in the thick of it,
Adam is out in the 600 Power Cup and runs a solid top ten and with a last lap
faller and jump start penalty he is promoted to 8th second row,

Mallory Race Mallory Park Round Two, Engine Two?


Out in the Endurance Qualifying Race, starting from the back
due to a non finish at Brands, Adam works his way up to 12th on
circuit and 1st in class before out comes the pace car and destroys
our lead and position on track.


Moto Grande, Race 1,P 19th may seem a long way
back and that’s because it is, the lights go out and I launch myself with the
pack, I spot Martin Landmann, ahead he’s quicker than me so I try to follow him
into the first turn.


Race craft is a funny old thing, as soon as you learn one
skill you need another, having worked hard on putting together a lap and on
race starts so that it’s no longer ready steady gone, you then have to figure
out what to do when 29 bikes all want to enter turn 1 at the same time, arrrrgh
this is manic.


I lose a couple of spots as I try to ride around the
outside, and set about chasing down the guys in front, racing Sprint is a world
apart from Endurance and now I need to reset the head. I finish 22nd
and know I need to work harder.


Sunday, a day of highs and lows, Race 2 back on the grid I
get a good start and hold my ground, there’s some shuffling around Gerrards but
I’m in the thick of a fight, lap after lap I reel in the three guys in front
until I’m with them, catching is one thing passing another (as old Murry Walker
used to say), we take the last lap flag and its wheel to wheel, around the
short circuit there an error in front at the bus stop, I squeeze open the
throttle and fire into the Elbow, pulling level on the outside I gas more and
run wide, checking the throttle to hook the bike back in I lose half a bike
length, over the stripe there is just 0.07 seconds between us and only 1.54
seconds split the 4 bikes finishing 15th to 18th.


18th is not my personal best finish however this
race was adrenalin fuelled, I was buzzing way beyond the end of the race,
dipped into the 59’s and now confident that I can get into the points in the
future, happy days.


Happy days, there’s a statement, still jabbering at 100mph I
walk up to the bus stop to watch Adam race in the 600 Power Cup, they guys take
the slighting laps and I miss Adam going past, still jabbering, looking down on
the start line the bikes take their positions and P8 is missing, what the
IMG 02921 600x448 Mallory Park Round Two, Engine Two?


A blown Engine for the second time, on the sighting laps and
less than 2 hours before the Endurance Race, while I’m buzzing Adam is a pole


Weekend over for Adam the second Endurance Race we fail to
start and the spanner men have another major job on their hands.


I finish the weekend with a final sprint race, I’m thinking
that if I can get a better start and get in the pack earlier I could improve
and maybe get pulled around to a 58 and score a point or two. The lights go out
and I get away well, into Gerrards and my experience, or lack of it comes to
the fore and I drop 4 spots, determined to make amends I try to carve up the
inside into Edwinas, hard on the brakes and my racing buddy Nick Barnes stuffs
it up the inside of me, he’s blocked me out and I’m shouting turn as he puts in
his block pass, he runs so deep he just makes the corner and forces me down the
slip road. Through the hay bails I rejoin in last position, well done me.


Head down I try my best and pick off guys at the back, running
in the 59s I finish a disappointing 22nd
running the same lap times as the guys in the points, drat drat and double
Thumbs up Mallory Park Round Two, Engine Two?


Next round Anglesey, and Apex racing have some scores to
settle, Adam needs to actually compete or I think he will explode not the
engine, I need to work out turns 1 and 2 and get some points and in the
Endurance only a win will satisfy, see you there…..