Hi everyone! Let me fill you in on how Oulton Park went for me. As it was Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK the meeting started a day later than normal and we raced on the public Holiday Monday.
That worked out great, as earlier during the week I was lucky enough to be looked after with a Camper for the rest of the year. A big thank you to "Owen Bros" for helping me out there.
They said the crowds would be big this weekend and they were right, it was a great to see so many people there and great to see British Motorcycle racing with such a good following.
The week before I was able to do a track day at Oulton and it was great to cut some laps at another circuit. The only downer for that day was I had another crash, the same as at Thruxton. It can affect your confidence but you have to ride above it and dust yourself off and get back on board, which is exactly what I did.
Free Practice 1 was really wet and with weather predictions for the weekend saying it was going to be great, no one really went out. I really would've liked if it wasn't wet, but one thing I have learnt is that the weather is so unpredictable here. So I had to wait for Free Practice 2 to ride in the dry, as I really wanted to try and get some feeling back with the bike.
The session went ok, but my feeling wasn't great, which meant we had a lot of work to do overnight in order to have a constructive plan for day two.
We woke to perfect weather and implemented the changes from the day before. Free Practice 3 went ok and the changes we made helped in some places, but not in others. Unfortunately Qualifying didn't go completely as planned and it was very frustrating to only make it to session two and no further, which meant that once more, my crew and I sat down and planned on how to gain me confidence for the actual races.
Race 1 was always going to be tough after changing the bike a lot to try and get more feel. That said, the race was going better for me. I was catching the group battling for eighth, but then made a mistake and ran off.
I'll always be the first to admit if it was my fault and on this instance it was. However, I was now more confident for race two as my feeling with the bike was the best it had been all weekend.