David Jefferies gave the V&M Racing team its first British Superstock victory of the season when he brought his Pirelli-shod R1 Yamaha home at the front of the field in Sunday's seventh round at Oulton Park.

The Yorkshireman, who has played second fiddle to runaway leader Paul Young all season, finally got the result he has been aiming for, when his unlucky Australian rival crashed his Suzuki out of the running halfway through the twelve-lap race.

"I couldn't believe it when I came round Old Hall corner and saw the yellow flags waving," Jefferies said, "I've been pushing 'Youngy' all season, and maybe he finally cracked under the pressure. To be fair, he maybe had a problem with his bike, but I'm just really pleased for the team, they're so enthusiastic and have kept telling me to keep plugging away and it certainly paid off this weekend."

The win moves defending British Superstock champion Jefferies to within forty points of leader Young and, with six rounds and a possible one hundred and fifty points still available, means the championship is far from being a foregone conclusion over the remainder of the season.

"I'm still in with a very good chance of winning the title, and with six rounds remaining anything can happen," Jefferies pointed out, "As the old saying goes, to finish first you first have to finish, so we'll keep trying to close that gap at the top of the table and see what happens."

The V&M Racing team also moved one step closer to retaining the British Supersport crown, when Matt Llewellyn grabbed the final podium place in the seventh round at Oulton Park. And after dominating qualifying and starting the race from pole position, Llewellyn was unlucky not to take his second win of the 2001 championship.

In a race run in two parts following a crash stoppage, Llewellyn smashed the lap record on his V&M Racing R6 Yamaha on three consecutive laps, as he recovered from a poor start, to force his way into third place. Despite this, he felt fortunate the race came to a premature end when his arm muscles pumped up after the opening five laps.

"I was closing in on the leaders when my arm started to go numb and it took me all my time to hang on to the handlebars," Llewellyn reported, "I took advantage of the short break in the races to have my arm massaged and I also removed the body armour from my leathers. Unfortunately, it happened again in the re-start, so I just had to settle for a third place finish."

The result was good enough to enable the Leicester rider to close the gap at the top of the Supersport 600 points table to just sixteen points, after championship leader Kirk McCarthy brought his Honda home in fifth place.

"I'm disappointed because, after lapping over a second inside the lap record during Saturday's Superpole qualifying, I felt I should have won the race, but at least we've closed the gap at the top of the table," he added

Team owner Jack Valentine was over the moon with his team's performances at the Oulton Park round.

"I'm delighted David broke his duck in the Superstock series and to have gained ground at the top of both championships," he said, "Matt's no need to feel disappointed, he showed in qualifying he was fast enough to win the race, it was just bad luck he had a problem with his arm pumping up."

Due to their continued success in the British Supersport 600 and British Superstock Championships, the V&M Racing Team has regrettably been forced to withdraw from the Ulster Grand Prix on 18 August - a meeting which unfortunately falls on the weekend between the Knockhill and Cadwell Park British Superbike rounds.

"It's disappointing for both the team and the riders to miss the Ulster GP, particularly as we enjoyed enormous success at the event over the last few years," said team owner Valentine, "Our main priority this season has to be the British championships, and our race budget is totally committed to maintaining our challenge for the British titles.

"We're sorry to disappoint our huge following of Irish fans, who have loyally supported us for many years when we've raced on the roads. But the costs involved to take everything over to Ireland for the one meeting, would unfortunately take us way over our racing budget."

 

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