Motorcycle Blog

Round two is here already and looming large in the distance lies Cadwell Park’s infamous Mountain, a wrecker of bikes, nerves, and chances should you get it wrong. As loved as the circuit is by so many, it’s a fickle friend that requires plenty of experience to negotiate with safety and speed.

So, it’s a good job I booked a space on Saturday’s practice day, because I’ve only spent two half days at Cadwell in six years. By coincidence, one of those sessions was on a Tuono. I’ll use the time to learn the circuit in detail and tweak the set-up of my Aprilia Tuono Factory.

Cadwell is narrow, bumpy, and a mix of flowing and tight sections. In these respects it isn’t dissimilar to Mallory, and seeing as the Aprilia was great there I’m hoping for more big things from it.

The track is so narrow that the grid now lines up in rows of three, instead of the usual four, for added safety. This is a great idea, though it will make qualifying even more important. I need to be on the front row at the very least to set up for the four eight-lap races. I’ll have a brand spanking set of D211GPs from new partner Dunlop that should make that task slightly easier. I ran pre-used tyres at Mallory. The D211GPs are awesome, so I can’t wait to feel them digging in through the slingshot of turn one.

Streetfighters have an exclusive grid at Cadwell, with the Supertwins class now piggybacking the Minitwins instead. That’s a very good thing, as we can get on with racing and qualifying against each other. There should be a few more Streetfighters out there too. It will be interesting to see who turns up and what they’re riding.

Finally, a correction to a previous post and an apology to Andy Denyer. I’m not leading the championship, he is – by one point! Andy had a solid weekend at Mallory last time with three seconds and a third (not the pair of each I thought he’d scored). Needless to say, I intend turning that situation around this weekend.

Look out for updates from the track every day over the weekend. Wish me luck.

The 2008 season was my novice year, and I entered Thundersport’s top class, GP1, on a GSX-R1000 K4. Racing on a shoestring, with no back-up at all and riding the oldest bike on the grid, I scored strong results against fierce competition. These performances earned recognition and praise from commentators, organisers, and rivals alike, culminating in the club’s Rookie Of The Year award.

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