The majority of the Saturday test day was spent getting more "seat time" on our Kawasaki Supersport bike. A number of small changes were made - including a change to the amount of throttle slack which made a massive difference to the way the bike felt whilst riding - and by the end of the day we felt natural on the new bike.
With the arrival of the Sunday race day, we thought it would be good to clarify our aims for the 2018 race season:
* Achieve a sub-1'00 lap of Darley Moor on the Kawasaki Supersport 600 machine, and
* Be able to complete 9 laps of Darley Moor before the "Stars" complete 10 laps! As we intend to enter the prestigious "Stars at Darley" race, we do not want to potentially interfere with the race result - so will only enter the Stars race if we can complete the races without being lapped.
The first qualifying session (on the Kawasaki Supertwin) was full of crashes and yellow flags. Unable to get a clear lap in, we managed to qualify 4th place in class (5th on the combined grid).
The qualifying session for the Kawasaki Supersport 600 bike was directly after the Supertwin session - once again there were more crashes and a red flag this time due to a couple of crashes at the back chicane. We wish all the best to anyone injured during those incidents! By the end of the restarted session we had qualified in 11th place (of 25) with a lap time of 1'03.33.
The first race of the day (and the season!) was the "Up to 650cc twin Allcomers" race. From the start we headed into the first chicane in second place and then managed to move into the lead by the end of the opening lap. On lap 2, Chris Moore came passed - we tried to keep with him but his pace was just too strong. Being kept honest by Richard Stubbs close behind, we managed to put in a series of consistent laps to keep 2nd position to the chequered flag and picked up our first trophy of the 2018 season.