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Round Six - Thruxton 2-4 August 2019

Ellis and Richardson fly high to Thruxton for round six 2-4 th August

 

This demanding Thruxton track is recognised by all as the fastest circuit on the BSB calender, and with that reputation comes a whole new set of challenges for the crews.

As a former war-time airfield, still active with peaceful flights today, the perimeter road forms the basis of the circuit. The predominantly right-handed bends are all high speed, and seem never-ending for the passengers, who tenaciously cling on almost by their fingertips. The new all-600cc formula for this championship has made corner speed even more important, so we are guaranteed very close racing in the three eight-lap races.

To increase this spectacle even more, we will be operating the “reverse grid” system in which the top ten finishers switch places for races two and three. Championship leaders Todd Ellis and Charlie Richardson take their Santander Salt Honda to Hampshire in a rich vein of form ahead of team-mates and defending champions Steve Kershaw and Stuart Clark (Molson Express Tyres Yamaha). They have taken seven wins from nine outings so far this season, with the reigning champions scratching their heads somewhat.

Last time out at Thruxton, Kershaw won two out of the three races with 1000cc power, harried all the way by world champions Ben and Tom Birchall, who actually took victory in the opening race ahead of Kershaw.

With no world championship duties this weekend, the Birchalls are booked in to renew that battle.

Another crew who love Thruxton, their local track, is the JG Speedfit/Quattro Plant duo of Ricky Stevens and Ryan Charlwood. After a crash-strewn start to their season, they have got their form back with two podiums last time out, and will be looking to continue the rest of the season in style.

The same can be said of Portsmouth's Ben Holland who, with Lee Watson back on board, is really enjoying his racing, and is another who loves the Thruxton circuit.

A fast emerging threat comes in the form of Lewis Blackstock and Paddy Rosney with their Barnes/Silicone Yamaha.

They, and their team mates John Holden and Lee Cain have really delivered this year and are very much still in the title hunt, with both crews in the top four of the standings.

Three races on the programme give Steve Kershaw and Stuart Clark an ideal opportunity to claw back some of that deficit from Ellis and Richardson, and you can be absolutely sure nothing matters to them more. At this the halfway stage of the season, their fight-back needs to start now.

Gary Bryan and Phil Hyde have been consistent all year (apart from a black flag in race two at Snetterton), and enjoy a slender seven point edge over Robb Biggs and Jeroen Schmitz, the latter nursing damaged ankle ligaments from two crashes at Snetterton.

Just twelve points split the next three crews, with veteran Brian Gray/Jason Pitt holding seventh ahead of Martin Kirk/Shellie Smithies, and a resurgent Chris Walker/Ashley Hawes. The Stalker is still getting to grips with his return to the sport on the TAG Racing Yamaha, but is building his speed all the time, especially when he gets a sniff of the sharp end from the reverse grids.

Eurosport are on hand with their usual weekend live coverage, with the third sidecar race between the two main Superbike races on Sunday.

Video highlights will be available shortly after the event here on www.rkb-f1-sidecars.com.

Media Matters - Barry Nutley - barry.nutley@btinternet.com

 

BSB / British Sidecar Championship Partners


Race action

Todd Ellis and Charlie Richardson

2nd place John Holden and Lee Cain, SBR (Silicone Engineering / Barnes Racing) lead Lewis Blackstock and Paddy Rosney, SBR - Silicone Engineering/ Barnes Racing Team Ramsden Racing (3rd)

Ricky Stevens and Ryan Charlwood

Ricky Stevens and Ryan Charlwood

 

 

Photos copyright: Impact Images Photography

 

 

 

 

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