Honda Racing's Steve Plater had an unlucky start to his first British Superbike race aboard the VTR1000 SP-2. Having qualified on the second row at Silverstone's International Circuit, the 30-year-old Lincolnshire rider was taken off on the first lap when three riders had a collision.

The race was eventually won by Shane Byrne with Yukio Kagayama and Glen Richards making up the podium places. Fortunately, Plater was uninjured and able to start the second race.

Plater explained what happened: "The start wasn't too bad, but I got a bit tangled up into the first turn and Emmett got the drive past me on the way up to Maggots. Emmett and Kirkham were slow out of that section and I was able to pull up alongside and then ahead of them into the Abbey Hairpin under braking.

"Then, Emmett did what I would call a classic spoiling manoeuvre. He let his brakes off and came right across the front of me. I hit the track quite hard and Kirkham ran into the back of me in the collision. However, I'm not hurt and will be OK for the second race. I'll be back on the Honda Racing SP-2, fired up and ready for action."

In race two, Plater made a good start on the VTR1000 SP-2 and had moved up to seventh place by the end of the first lap. Determined to make an impression with last year's Superbike World Championship-winning machine, Plater then moved up to sixth place on lap two, continuing his charge around the International Circuit. On lap six, Plater caught and passed Gary Mason and began to chase race one podium finisher Glen Richards.

Gaining confidence on the V-twin Honda throughout the 22-lap race, Plater fought his way up to fifth by half race distance before coming under increasing pressure by reigning British Superbike Champion Steve Hislop, who passed him on lap 15.

Michael Rutter eventually won the race, with Shane Byrne and Glen Richards completing the podium places. Plater finished in tenth place, after struggling with front-end grip in the latter stages, taking a tumble on the SP-2 and then remounting to finish the race and secure vital championship points.

"It was great to get a race distance under my belt after the first race. The Honda Racing SP-2 is a superb machine and I was going well in the chase for fourth place with Kagayama and Hislop just in front," Platter said afterwards.

"I think I got a bit excited after that, when I should have just settled for sixth and picked up some extra points. Unfortunately, I just pushed too hard and lost the front. Then I managed to climb back on board and ride round to get off the mark in the points table.

"It's been one of those days, but we're going testing again this week and that will hopefully get us back on track. The focus will be to move on to the next stage of our testing programme with Dunlop and hope to make more of an impression at the next round at Snetterton in two weeks."

 

Comments

Loading Comments...