May 2010

Hi again and before anybody thinks it, I know it’s been ages since I put anything on the site, Susan has already reminded me!  So here we are again, the start of the 2010 season, it’s been a long winter looking forward to getting back on a bike, almost needing a refresher course it’s been so long. Anyway we’re back again with another brand new ER6 courtesy of Dave Winfield at Kawasaki Newcastle, which without his generosity and many other of my sponsors  it just would not be possible.

David Bell North East Motorcycle Racer

Looking all 'bling bling' in my new kit before practice. (Photo courtesy of Chris Machin.)

I have one new sponsor to add this season, a good friend of ours Stephen Graham of SG Fabrication has kindly offered his support, Dave Jackson from Moto Direct has once again sorted us out with top quality kit for 2010 with RST Leathers, Boots and Gloves and KBC Helmets along with Motul Oil once again. So a massive thank you must go to him along with all my other sponsors, SPAstley, Cornerspeed Ltd, Merlin Sidecars, Olde Worlde Fireplaces, Bespoke Signs, SMP, Trevor Hedley & last but not least Brian Hall.

This season I will once again be doing the North East Championship plus all four meeting’s at Olivers Mount, Scarborough, I have also entered the Southern 100 in the Isle of Man, plus I will be returning to the TT course after a 4 year lay off for the Manx GP in August for the Ultra Lightweight race and I’m really looking forward to that as it’s my favourite track and it’ll be a pleasure riding the ER6 there so it’s going to be a busy year ahead but hopefully a good one.

 

I got the bike back in March and I’ve been working hard preparing it for the new season, it’s pretty much the same as last year’s bike so it was just like putting an old pair of slippers on when we went to Scarborough for the Ian Watson Spring National in April. The God’s were kind and it was a lovely day although it did get really cold toward the end, practice went well and I got myself back into the swing of things before qualifying. I set off at the back and deliberately hung back so I could get a couple of good clear laps in, my first flying lap was ok but then I nearly ‘highsided’ coming out of Mere hairpin on my second lap, as I rode away my left footrest felt funny so I looked down and it was bent down at 45 degrees due to me landing on it so I had to pull in but my one lap was good enough for 4th fastest so I wasn’t too disappointed.

Olivers Mount

Chasing Pixie over the Jumps, it was this close for most of the race. (CDH Photography)

First race of the day was the Superbike Qualifier and I made a good start going down the outside into Mere passing quite a few although it is a bit dodgy, I lost a couple of places up the back straight to bigger bikes but managed to keep the rest behind me to finish 12th, unfortunately that wasn’t good enough to make it into the final, but I’m still not sure how they work it out. Anyway enough of me moaning and onto the first Supertwins race. I didn’t get a good start and was in 4th coming out of the first corner, I quickly moved into 3rd at the end of the back straight then set my sights on Pixie and Ryan Farquhar who had already pulled a 2-3 second gap, I could see Ryan edging away at the front but I got my head down and started to reel Pixie in. Lap by lap I closed in and by the end of lap four I was on his back wheel, every time I got near him he jumped away out of the slow corners and I was having to push really hard to get in a position to make a pass,

I could get level on the brakes but Pixie was riding well and defending his lines forcing me to go to the outside, as we went onto the last lap I had a couple of places in my mind where I could have a good go at making a pass but as we got to the top of Quarry Hill we came across a backmarker, as we went through the ‘Esses’ Pixie had a look up the inside going into the left hander but backed out at the last minute which gave me my opportunity and I grabbed it with both hands riding round the outside of them both.

I have to admit that I was giggling to myself going up the back straight as I new Pixie would be spitting at letting me past so easily, I kept my head and rode the rest of the lap with no drama to take 2nd. After the race we shook hands and had a good bit crack about what had gone on, it was a cracking race but a hard which I enjoyed every minute of.

After a bit of a break I went out to the line for the second Supertwins race lining up in the order of the last race so I moved up onto the front row, I made a better start but couldn’t live with the grunt of Ryan & Pixies tuned engines on the run to Mere. I slotted into 3rd but didn’t let them get away this time, Ryan was pulling away and I got a good run out of Mountside on lap two and was right on Pixie’s back wheel over the jumps slotting up the inside on the approach to farm bends moving into 2nd, I put in four good laps and pulled a gap and at one point was catching Farquhar but I was never going to get onto his back wheel so I backed off a little and had some fun on the last two laps pulling wheelies and backing it in to the hairpins, another 2nd but an easier race this time and I was happy with how things had gone.

Backing it into Mountside Hairpin was a hoot (Russel Hunter)

The last race of the day was the Superbike B final and I had a fourth row grid position, I made a decent start and the first couple of laps were a bit hectic but I made it through the melee and had a good race finishing 3rd so it was a good end to the meeting and I was more than happy.

 Next up for me is rounds 1 & 2 of the North East Championship up at East Fortune on the 15th &16th of May so hopefully we’ll have a good one up there and I’ll keep you informed on how things go soon.

Cheers Dave.