Team Suzuki Press Office – September 9.
Taylor Mackenzie raced his Bennetts Suzuki GSX-R1000 to seventh place at Silverstone today in the first of three races as part of this weekend’s triple-header and round nine of the MCE British Superbike Championship.
Mackenzie qualified in a solid 12th place, just half a second off the lap record, the youngster feeling more confident and comfortable on the bike after a difficult middle part of the season. He then pushed on in today’s race in tricky conditions to take a credible seventh placed finish. He will start race two from eighth on the grid.
“It was a really good race. I was brave off the start and pushed hard on intermediate tyres to pass a few people and just chipped away, and I’m really happy with our performance and our progress. It’s our best finish for a long time. We’re eighth on the grid for race two, so hopefully we can get away well and get back into that top five.”
His teammate, Sylvain Guintoli, finished 13th but will start tomorrow’s opening race from second on the grid after setting the second fastest lap of the race, opting for full slicks in today’s outing.
However, the Frenchman has enjoyed a positive weekend so far, making it into Q3 for the first time this season and started the race from sixth on the grid. The track conditions saw him surrender places, yet the former World Superbike Champion is optimistic of a good showing tomorrow.
“Today was okay. In the dry, in qualifying, we were strong and had our best performance of the season. But the race was very difficult; some of the track was dry, some was fully wet, but the wind was high and the sun was shining so we took a gamble. The result was a shame, but we got a good lap-time in and we are in a good position for tomorrow’s race.”
In the National Superstock 1000 class, Richard Cooper qualified on pole position, as he looks to continue his fight for this year’s championship crown. The Nottinghamshire rider and former class champion set a best lap time over three-tenths-of-a-second quicker than anyone else and showed that both he and the GSX-R1000 can be competitive come rain or shine.
“It’s been a good start to the weekend, we’ve been strong in each session and it’s good to be on pole for tomorrow. We’ve got ground to recover in the championship but we’re in a good position, my bike’s working well, and hopefully we can have good a race.”
British Superbike race one result: 1. Glenn Irwin, 2. Josh Brookes, 3. John Hopkins, 7. Taylor Mackenzie (Bennetts Suzuki GSX-R1000), 13, Sylvain Guintoli (Bennetts Suzuki GSX-R1000).
Superstock 1000 qualifying result: 1. Richard Cooper (Bennetts Suzuki GSX-R1000), 2. Michael Rutter, 3. Fraser Rogers.