After being on a high after the Scarborugh Gold Cup races a week ago, Guy Martin came back down to earth with a bang at Silverstone this weekend, where he was competing in the penultimate round of the British Superbike Championship. The Hydrex Bike Animal Honda rider suffered a fall in qualifying and his mood was worsened when mechanical problems caused him to retire from both of Sunday’s races.
Guy improved steadily throughout the free practice sessions and was looking for more improvements in the qualifying shootout but, after posting a time of 1m28.530s in the first phase to move inside the all important top-20, he suffered a low speed spill at the chicane. Despite the team’s best efforts, time ultimately beat Guy and he was unable to go back out on to the track to improve his time and he ended up 21st, for a sixth row start.
Race day itself proved to be no better and his first race ended at half race distance when he pulled in to the pits to retire due to technical problems. The problems surfaced earlier in the second race later in the day and a fourth lap retirement completed a disastrous weekend for Guy and he went home pointless.
Speaking afterwards, a disappointed Guy said:
‘This weekend has been nothing short of a disaster and I’m a bit lost for words as to what’s happened. Things were steadily getting better during practice and I was improving my times in every session but I lost the front going into the final chicane in qualifying and with the new format there’s simply no time to be stuck in the pits. The boy’s did all they could to get me back out but the clock beat us.’
‘It was always going to be difficult from the sixth row but I’m the eternal optimist and seeing as I’m more of a racer than a qualifier I was still firmly aiming at the top 15. I got fairly decent starts in both races but the bike was misfiring almost straightaway and whilst I plugged away as best I could, there was no signs of it going away so I had little option other than to pull in each time. We looked in to everything to try and solve it but there were no immediate signs so we’ll go back to the drawing board and get our heads down in time for Brands. I got points there earlier in the year so it would be nice to end the season with similar results.
The final round of the British Superbike Championship takes place at Brands Hatch, Kent on October 10-12.
Picture by Glynne Lewis