Tim Hastings - BSB Croft

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Auld Twister
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Tim Hastings - BSB Croft

Post by Auld Twister » Tue May 17, 2011 10:35 am

The third round of the 2011 Metzeler 600 Superstock National Championship turned out to be a fantastic weekend for Tim Hastings as he took his best ever 600 result with a top ten finish at Croft.

Variable weather throughout the weekend provided an additional challenge for Team Twister, but Tim has always performed well at Croft and the team was confident of an upturn in fortune after the disappointment of Oulton.

Having had the Team Green ZX6R’s suspension serviced by the Ohlins race support crew on arrival, Tim was soon on the pace during Friday’s wet free practice session. Completing the session in P10, Tim was happy that he had a good setting for wet conditions and was prepared for whatever weather was to come during the first qualifying session later that day.

Q1 was windy but dry and the team reverted back to dry settings to see how this would affect Tim's progress. However, 15 minutes before Tim was due to start his session, a small water leak was found on the bike’s radiator. Thanks to the quick assistance of the Gearlink Kawasaki Team a spare was fitted in time to get Tim out on track and he completed the session in P15 - happy with the suspension changes that had eliminated troublesome rear chatter, but still lacking rear grip at maximum lean.

A few more suspension tweaks - along with Tim's first new set of tyres - meant the team was ready for Saturday’s second qualifying which was held in similar blustery conditions to Friday’s. Tim managed to improve his lap time by an impressive 0.7 seconds, but remained in P15, meaning a fourth row start for Sunday’s race. Although not ideal, the changes to the bike were again a step in the right direction, and a fourth row start was a whole lot better than the seventh row of the grid at Oulton.

Damp race day weather saw Tim elect to go out for his warm up on dry tyres - completing the session in P7 - and with the 600s due to race early in the programme, the team then set about readying the bike for the race itself. As the weather took yet another turn, it was a last minute decision to send Tim to pit lane on full wets, but a delayed start and a drying track meant that he changed to drys on the grid - just before race control confirmed a "dry" race - meaning that the race would be stopped in the event of further rain.

With race distance reduced from 14 to 12 laps, Tim got a steady start, gaining one place at the end of lap one, but more importantly remaining in touch with the front runners on the back of the leading pack. Throughout the race Tim battled impressively at a good pace and had made some strong overtakes to reach 11th starting the final lap. Tim was trying to make a pass for 10th but the rider in front was expecting the pass and covered all the lines, so Tim made a pass where it was least expected, getting through at Barcroft, just before Sunny In, and then building a 0.5 second advantage in the remaining third of a lap to complete the race in 10th and record his best finish in the Superstock 600 class.

Team Twister wishes to thank the Gearlink Kawasaki team for their continued help and advice, and the technical crews at Ohlins and Pirelli for their assistance at Croft. Thanks also to sponsors Shark Helmets, Rock Oil and Knox, and to all those who stopped by over the course of the weekend to chat, wish the team well and take the time to show an interest in Tim and his racing. Special mention to the Allsopp family, the Sangwin family, Ashley and Beth Enright, and to Kirsty Ferguson and Emily Sangwin for being our brolly girls. Thanks too to Mick Simms and Tina Mason for their continued support - the team was delighted that you were all there to share our best result yet.

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