Rizla Suzuki rider John Reynolds has vowed it is only a matter of time before he wins his first race of 2002 after proving the pedigree of the GSX-R1000 at Snetterton, on Jubilee Bank Holiday Monday, June 3rd.

The racing at the Norfolk track was interrupted by a spate of red flags and intermittent showers, but that didn't stop a 20,000 strong crowd from cheering on a determined Reynolds as he man-handled his Suzuki around the superfast 1.952mile track that boasts a 180mph back straight.

Reynolds scored a convincing runners-up spot in the first Superbike race of the day to go into the second event in optimistic mood. The Rizla Suzuki rider was challenging for the lead and lying in third place on lap nine when he lost the front end of his bike going into the slow left-hand Russell Bend on the approach to the start-finish straight. Sean Emmett (Ducati) won both races. Unhurt, Reynolds admitted he was gutted not to finish.

He said: "That is difficult to take. The bike was running well and the speed down the back straight was good. I was fighting for the lead and I was breaking hard into Russells when the front went away as I was changing direction. We are trying very hard to win races and this sort of thing happens. It only strengthens our will to win. I will top the podium soon."

Reynolds' team mate for the round was Italian ex-World Superbike racer Giovanni Bussei. The 29-year-old, riding in his first race for the Rizla Suzuki squad on a new bike at a new track, scored seventh and 11th places finishes.

Beard-totting Bussei commented: "In the first race I struggled for grip and still finished seventh. In the second race I was having trouble overtaking the bikes in front of me and felt I could have went faster than them. But I am still getting to grips with the bike and hope that I can do better at the next round."

Team manager Paul Denning concluded: "That was a disappointing end to an otherwise excellent weekend. Front row qualifying, a second place in the first race and the fastest lap of the weekend was all let down by a DNF in the second race. But John is paid to win races and that is exactly what he was trying to do. Hindsight is a wonderful thing and we know if John had stayed upright in the second race he would have finished an easy second place or possibly even challenged for the win as the riders in front slowed dramatically as the race went on."

"Giovanni did a great job for us this weekend and recorded two good results. He will be looking forward to the next round and improving his results there. It's clear the GSX-R1000 is ready to win a Superbike race. It's competing at the highest level and the team is putting 110 per cent effort into the racing. Hopefully we'll get 50 per cent better luck from now on. If we do, we'll win for sure."

Suzuki Racing round-up:

- Suzuki's GSX-R600 filled the first four places in the National Junior Superstock race yesterday. Race winner Craig Jones also set a new lap record of 1m 11.505s on his Suzuki - a full half second faster than anyone else.

Race Result: 1: Craig Jones (Suzuki) 17:51.654, 2: Thomas Sykes (Suzuki) +.357, 3: Benjie Cockerill (Suzuki) +2.108, 4: Guy Martin (Suzuki) +2.528. Championship positions: 1: Craig Jones (Suzuki) 125, 2: Thomas Sykes (Suzuki) 98, 3: David Johnson (Suzuki) 67.

- Jeremy Goodall was the best Suzuki finisher in the National Supersport 600 race, finishing fourth on his GSX-R600.

Race Result: 1: Stuart Easton (Ducati) 21:11.598, 2: Michael Laverty (Honda) +.324, 3: Scott Smart (Honda) +1-lap, 4: Jeremy Goodall (Suzuki) +1-lap. Championship positions: 1: Stuart Easton (Ducati) 125, 2: Scott Smart (Honda) 78, Pete Jennings (Kawasaki) 63.

- Suzukis dominated the National Superstock race at Snetterton yesterday. GSX-R1000 riders filled the top nine places.

Race Result: 1: Chris Burns (Suzuki) 17:29.325, 2: Marshall Neill (Suzuki) +10.060, 3: Steve Brogan (Suzuki) +21.110. Championship positions: 1: Chris Burns (Suzuki) 111, 2: David Jefferies (Suzuki) 90, 3: Ross McCulloch (Suzuki) 64.

 

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