CADWELL PARK RETURNS THIS WEEKEND TO THE DELIGHT OF RIDERS AND CROWDS ALIKE
Finally, after two long years, the Bennetts British Superbike Championship returns to the iconic Cadwell Park this weekend! It’s been a long time coming and the excitement is palpable as the stars of the finest domestic motorcycle racing championship head to the jewel in Lincolnshire’s crown. Woodland, parkland, the rollers of Hall Bends, and the sweep of Chris Curve; the blind summit of Charlie’s that favours the brave but not forgetting the epic Mountain section and the awe-inspiring uphill left that is Coppice corner that leads out into the parkland (watch a session from there, you won't be disappointed!).
A host of Lincolnshire riders will be gunning for glory as we return to their native home, a home where the memories are fond. Lee Jackson holds the lap record on a BMW from 2017 while Peter Hickman took his and the RAF Regular & Reserves team’s maiden win at this very circuit. Young gun yellowbellies, Tim and Tom Neave, will be eager to bring home a result in the Superstock championship aboard their Suzuki and Honda machines before heading back to their farm just off the A15. Lincoln’s Harry Truelove is riding the crest of confidence after taking his first British Supersport victory at Donington Park last time out and will be out to replicate that win this weekend, now he's got the taste for victory.
Last time out in 2019 the podium positions were shared between the same three riders in both races as Brookes and Buchan both took wins as Tommy Bridewell shared the podium steps with the pair. Like Hickman, Oxford Racing MotoRapido’s Tommy Bridewell took his maiden BSB win at Cadwell Park back in 2014 for Milwaukee Yamaha in one of the closest finishes ever seen at British Superbikes, just 0.005s separated Bridewell from Shane Byrne at the line. While for Brookes it was the first podium visits at the circuit since 2015; despite his prowess over the Mountain, Cadwell hasn’t been the happiest of hunting grounds for the reigning champion and with any hope of retaining his title all but gone, it could be another difficult weekend for the double champ.
Speaking of conquerors of the Mountain, SYNETIQ BMW will be without 2019 race one winner Danny Buchan this weekend after his race two incident down Craner Curves at Donington Park left him with a concussion. The BSB 7-day rule has rightly been enforced and the Essex man will sit out the weekend, falling victim to the back-to-back rounds. After a DNF and a DNS at Donington and sitting out the three races at Cadwell, it’s a big hit on Buchan’s title aspirations as now podium credits and championship points become ever more crucial as the regular season speeds towards its crescendo at Silverstone, just two rounds after Cadwell.
What of the remaining BMWs? The circuit still awaits its first Superbike win for the German marque, despite the S1000RR holding the current lap record. In the fabled ‘M’ form of the current model, it’s down to FHO’s Hickman, SYNETIQ BMW man Andrew Irwin, and the RICH Energy OMG Racing pairing of Brad Ray and Kyle Ryde. Of those two, Brad Ray stood on the podium at Cadwell twice in 2017 while it’s only Ryde’s first time at Cadwell Park on a superbike, so it’s a lot of learning required for the Nottinghamshire man across the weekend.
The Milwaukee King of Cadwell will be music to the ears of McAMS Yamaha’s Tarran Mackenzie as the Scottish Englishman looks to add another really heavy trophy to his mantlepiece alongside his King of Brands and King of Donington silverware (if only there was a King of Shaves round, too). Taz jumped up to second overall in the standings after Donington, 54 points and 25 podium credits behind leader O'Halloran. Like his hometown legend, Wayne Gardner back in the ’80s, Mackenzie’s teammate Jason O’Halloran is native to Bomber County now and will be keen to top the podium in the three races and add crucial podium credits to his title charge. After his co-worker, the O’Show’s closest challenger is PBM’s Christian Iddon who had a Donington Park to forget with two DNFs and a rather large bone to pick with Andrew Irwin after their clash at Redgate. Iddon goes well at Cadwell and will be keen to make his mark on the title challenge once again.
Cadwell Park isn’t the easiest place in the world to race a motorcycle and as much as we’re all looking forwards to getting back there, we wish all competitors a safe and exciting weekend of action.
The racing is back on Eurosport 2 over the weekend along with WorldSBK from Navarra as well as the Eurosport Player, the BSB Superpicks app, and of course, the excellent and necessary TSL Timing https://www.tsl-timing.com/event/213304