Tim Hastings - Knock hill

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Derren Brown
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Tim Hastings - Knock hill

Post by Zax » Tue Jul 06, 2010 5:17 pm

An encouraging weekend but a frustrating race sums up the latest round of the Metzeler 600 Superstock National Championship for Tim Hastings, as the Scottish weather played havoc with his home round at Knockhill near Dunfermline.

Tim’s last Knockhill race had been in the GP125 class in 2009 - and he’d had no 600 experience there aside from a track day on a loaned Yamaha YZFR6 last September - so there were no home round expectations or pressures on Tim, apart from his own desire to do well in front of his local fans.

True to his recent form however, Tim went out in first practice and immediately gelled with the Team Green Kawasaki ZX6R, lapping the short and twisty Knockhill circuit with a best time of 54.020s and finishing the session 12th in Group A and 18th overall. The afternoon got even better when Tim upped the pace in the first qualifying session - finishing 7th in Group A (12th overall) with a time of 53.007s and a provisional third row start. Special thanks are due to Michael at Gearlink Kawasaki who was on hand in pit lane to offer valuable set up advice.

Tim was in confident mood heading into Saturday's second qualifying session and set about getting up to speed on "scrubbed" tyres before making a scheduled stop for a new rear tyre. He improved in time again to end the session 10th in Group A and 21st overall - just 1.1 seconds off pole position! This was Tim's best qualifying result so far on the 600 and due to an injured rider having to withdraw from the race, Tim would be starting Sunday’s race from the 5th row.

After weeks of warm and dry conditions, a predicted change in the weather on race day saw Knockhill hit with heavy rain and very strong blustery winds. Although Tim was now getting to grips with the Kawasaki, the team realised that he had never raced one in the wet before, so it was with a sense of nervousness that he went out for the ironically termed morning "warm up" - returning soaked, but happy enough with the progress made.

As the day progressed and the weather deteriorated further - resulting in delays, G-spot changes and ultimately the abandonment of the entire BSB Meeting - Tim’s first race (of two scheduled for the 600 superstocks) was one of the few to survive the deluge. Tim made a good start from the 5th row of the grid, but his lack of confidence and experience with the 600 on a wet track soon began to show. In a matter of laps he had dropped to last place where - conscious that bringing the bike home intact and gaining wet weather experience were more important than trying than chasing places - he remained to the chequered flag.

Although disappointing in terms of the overall result, the Knockhill weekend was very encouraging, especially in practice and qualifying where Tim made huge progress - and he now also has a few wet sessions’ experience to draw on.

Team Twister would like to thank all the Gearlink Kawasaki team who continue to provide support and encouragement. Thanks too to all friends and supporters who dropped in to say hello, in particular; Mr and Mrs Sladdin, Ashley and Beth Enright, Robert and Allan Nielson, Jason Hoffman, the Scott family and John Higham. Unfortunately, Mick Simms and Tina Mason couldn't attend due a family member's illness, but thank you for keeping in touch via telephone.

Despite struggling to raise funds for the next round, Team Twister hopes to make the trip to Snetterton in two week’s time for what - with the rescheduled 2nd Knockhill race - will now be a double header for the 600s.

Warren Scott

6 July 2010

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