SAMSUNG HONDA AIMING HIGH WITH OULTON PARK ON THE HORIZON
The Samsung Honda team returns to Cheshire this weekend for the sixth round of the British Superbike Championship as the Superbike and Superstock team bids to continue their recent run of podium-finishes.
Michael Laverty's recent victories and podium finishes in the previous two rounds put him fourth in the overall standings as he arrives back in Cheshire, eager to maintain his momentum at the challenging parkland circuit.
Jon Kirkham returns to the Oulton Park circuit where he suffered a massive 'off' earlier in the year. A high-speed crash in race one was to leave him on the sidelines with concussion and would prevent him from competing in race two at the May event. He will be looking to put that behind him and is focused on closing the points deficit on the top six.
In the Superstock 1000 Championship Jason O'Halloran has his sights set on regaining his championship lead after a crash at Knockhill put him out of contention for a podium finish whilst Gary Johnson is aiming to build on his previous top six finish at the Cheshire circuit.
Michael Laverty: "Now we are back in the top six we have to be consistent and remain there. Snetterton gave us a real boost of confidence and then again at Knockhill we were right up there and had another win and podium which puts us nicely in fourth at the moment. The Samsung Honda team have continued to develop the bike and we had another test before Oulton Park with some really good feedback. It won't be easy winning but I am aiming for more podium credits and if I can I will be fighting for the wins and giving it everything. I am sitting in fourth and we need to consolidate that in the three races this weekend."
Jon Kirkham: "I am ready for Oulton Park and I really want to get back into the groove this weekend. We had a reasonable weekend with free practice and qualifying up until the crash in the race earlier in the year so I really want to be back up there fighting. It won't faze me going back this weekend and I want to be back up there especially with three races so we can try to get back in the top six."
Jason O'Halloran: "Oulton Park has been an unlucky circuit for me over the past couple of seasons so I am looking forward to turning that around this weekend. I had pole position there a few months back so I'm confident heading into the weekend of a strong result."
Gary Johnson: "We had a good run at Oulton Park earlier in the year so hopefully we can pick up where we left off and have another good point scoring weekend. We are improving all the time and with the experience we had earlier in the year we should be in a better position."
Havier Beltran, Team Manager: "The whole of the Samsung Honda team are ready for this weekend and are hoping that this time around we can leave Cheshire with some strong finishes after what was arguably our most difficult round of the season back in May, particularly for JK with his crash. Michael has shown his strength since then and his aim is to continue his podium finishing form and consolidate his position inside the top six. JK had a strong start to his Oulton Park weekend before his crash so hopefully he can find that momentum again to be challenging at the front. In the Superstock class Jason is aiming to regain the standings lead whilst Gary is looking to build on his results from Knockhill."