The final British Superbike rounds at Donington Park last weekend saw consistent riding from Phil Giles earn the Padgett's team ninth place in the BSB Premier Teams League. Meanwhile 13 proved definitely unlucky for team-mate and ex-Aprilia GP rider Adrian Coates' when his season came to a premature end with a fluke chain failure on the 13th lap of the second race.

In typically determined style Nottingham rider Giles saw off challenges from the Marshall Tufflex TW2 Motorsport duo of Jason Davis and Lee Jackson to finish 11th in race one, and from Mark Burr and Jackson again in race two to take 13th.

"I'm getting more comfortable with the bike all the time," said 28 year-old Giles, "it would have been great to ride for the team all year rather than just the few outings at both ends of the season. I'm sure we'd have been breaking into the top ten on a regular basis by now. I've been matching, and sometimes beating, Adrian's lap times and he got tenth in his first BSB race at Snetterton."

Giles' confidence in the Padgett's bike enabled him to take the honours of being the fastest Suzuki under the Dunlop bridge in race one and within 0.3 mph of factory-supported Suzuki rider John Reynolds in race two.

Despite consistently out-qualifying his temporary team-mate, Ulsterman Coates was unable to find his true pace in the first race finishing in 13th place. Struggling with front-end grip, his frustration showed as he ran wide several times allowing the following pack to take advantage and nip past.

Unfortunately for the Irishman the uncharacteristic chain failure in race two robbed him of any chance to finish the last Championship race on a positive note, leaving him to reflect on a debut year in BSB that has seen the 2001 British 250cc Champion playing catch-up to the rest of the field after a pre-season injury kept him out of the series until the fifth round at Snetterton.

"It's been a bit of a roller coaster year," said Coates, "missing the first few rounds certainly didn't help and a superbike is obviously a very different proposition compared to a thoroughbred racing 250. I've had to adapt my style and try to learn what the bike's capable of at the same time. The speed and reliability of the bike through the year has been a credit to the Padgett team and the improvement in consistency shows we've been moving in the right direction. I'm sure next year we can be even more competitive, especially with the changes Suzuki have made to the GSX for 2003."

Team Manager Clive Padgett added "Finishing our first year in ninth place amongst the factory supported teams and the regular BSB runners is gratifying and just reward for the hard work the team's put in all season; especially after we had to start the year with temporary riders because of Adrian and Marty Nutt being sidelined with injuries. Running a two-man Superbike team as well as Leon Camier and Daniel Coutts in the 125's has been pretty hectic. We're all looking forward to a well earned rest now, before we start getting everything in place for next season!"

 

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