Oulton Park 21st April 2007

Wirral 100; Forgotten Era race; Oulton Park; April 21st

Normally there is a race to determine grid position but due to limited time the first race grid positions were base on the last race of the 2006 season, this meant that me (Doc) was placed on grid position 2. Liam being his first race (ever) was listed as position 14.
Before any racing their is a practise of 15 minutes, this was reduced to only 10 minutes as their was an accident and it was red flagged. This shortened practise was not a good start for Liam as not only was this his first ever race, it was the first time he had seen Oulton Park, no track days, nothing. He was going to be in the deep end! And it wasn’t going to smell nice
Liam and I were a bit worried when we looked around as we gathered for the practices. Their was only about 5 orange bids, indicating that their wasn’t many novice’s like me and Liam racing. To make matters worst when we looked at the race listings the number of over 500cc bike class had doubled since last year. It didn’t get any better when we noticed a mint RC30 (VFR750R) along with at least 3 OWO1 YZF750, perhaps some people are taking this little championship seriously.

The first race was for a Trophy plus grid position for the next race, (which is for championship points).
The starting is normally my weak point as I usually get mugged by the first bend. This time Steve Cave on pole position had a poor start so I got in front of him while third place man, Dennis Sholicar and fourth place Mike Hose (riding a Weslake) got in front of me. It wasn’t long before Steve found his way pass me, leaving me in forth. The race stayed pretty much the same until the end. The only problem I noticed was I could hear my engine ‘pinking’ so the last few laps I change up at 8,000 revs against my normal shifting point of 9-9500 rpm i.e. Red line (Cured on the second race with the addition of an octane booster)
Meanwhile, Liam wasn’t having it so good. After pulling always in first, then upon shifting to second he missed the gear and was swamped by about 10 riders, not good. He finally made his way through the pack sometimes taking two or three riders at a time only to encounter a big problem on lap four as his coils decided to pack in on number 1 and 4. He limped home not finishing the race. He was very disappointed but hey, that’s racing.

I was positioned to forth and poor Liam was sent back to position 32, I didn’t even knew it when that far back! At least he would have no problem of being over taken if he missed a gear again as their was no one behind him, he did see the lighter point of our piss taking.
I had a great start. I pulled away normally from first gear not using too many revs and short shifted into second quickly where I gave it full throttle, the front came up so gentle that it looked like I had done it just to look cool, on changing to third the front came down and it shot to the first corner with only the race one winner Mike Hose, (who we found out later that not only is his Weslake a one off race bike having 125 hp at the back wheel and weighing only 120kg plus the guy is an TT racer. Shit I thought this was budget club racing) in front. For what seem like a long time (may be a lap) I was second. Dennis got the better of me by out braking me into a bend. Another two laps went by and I was still third. Then coming out of Foulston and giving it full throttle in third I missed forth, shit I thought as the rev needle when into the ‘bent valve’ area of the rev range, as I cogged forth and went over Hill Top, Steve came pass. The last lap Steve pulled away slightly but least I made the bugger sweat for four laps to pass me. I came in fourth and took another 5 seconds off the previous race time (9mins 51sec for the 5 laps).
Liam had a hard time by battling from 32nd grid position to a excellent final 12th position, this making a total of 17 bikes he passed over the five laps to get there. His time was 10’39” and considering its his first race on track he’s never been round was an impressive start to the season.

Next race is Bank holiday Monday May 28th. Anglesey (North Wales) It should be a good level playing field as it’s a new track as its just been upgraded to International standard and no one has had chance to learn the course. Come along and support us, all welcome.

were off small

Doc riding a FJ1100 1984 and Liam riding a FJ1200 1TX 1986 model; Ready for the first race

liam on the curbs small

Liam 'Corky' Horgan using all the track; plus more.

phil pic small

Doc on his warm up lap; Note new for 2007:

Cut down seat
Modified front fairing to allow more cool air over cylinder head
New Belly pan with added under tray
Lighter wheels; Ducati 999 front and GSXR750 rear
Lighter rear brake disc and caliper

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