Donington BSB: Mackenzie maintains hopes at home| Phil Wain | British Superbikes
A crash, a technical, a win and a BSB title lead, Donington Park proved a rollercoaster weekend for McAMS Yamaha’s Tarran Mackenzie.
Mackenzie may only have taken one win at the Derby track, victory coming in the only dry race to take place, but he left his local circuit with a 10 point lead in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship with just the final round to go.
It would have been a bigger advantage too had the McAMS Yamaha rider not been forced out of a podium position early in the final race. Nevertheless, he was happy with his weekend’s work and equally happy with his championship lead.
“I think there are a lot of positives to take out of this weekend as we come away from Donington with a bigger points lead than we had coming here, so I’m really happy with that,” the 25 year old said.
The weekend got off to a slow start for Mackenzie having crashed in qualifying and he could only manage seventh in Saturday’s race of attrition that saw many of his Showdown rivals crash.
“I was kind of glad I crashed in qualifying because I felt like I could ride around and do what I normally do in the wet but I don’t think it was possible for me to do that in the conditions in Saturday’s race.”
“After that crash I told myself I was going to have to ride around and try to finish the race wherever I could. When I saw Tommy (Bridewell) go down and that Jason (O’Halloran) was only a couple of points ahead, I wasn’t too worried so I just watched my pit board and got round to score some valuable points. It’s days like Saturday where the points really matter.”
Tying for the Championship lead with team-mate O’Halloran after that first race, Mackenzie reasserted his authority in Sunday’s opening encounter coming through from 13th on the grid to hit the front for the first time on the penultimate lap.
He eventually took the win from Danny Buchan, setting the fastest lap of the race on the final lap, and with O’Halloran continuing to finish downfield, his points advantage looked set to increase further until his final race retirement.
“I wasn’t sure what tyre to go with in the first race but knew Jason had gone for the harder SC0 so I stuck with my plan and went with the softer SCX. We showed our speed coming through from 13th to win.”
“The starting position was far from ideal but in the dry we had a great setting and was able to save the tyre life yet still make moves forward at the same time. The front three had got away a bit but I was able to bridge the gap and overtook Gino (Rea) and Christian (Iddon) before getting past Danny with a lap and a half to go.”
“In the wet in the final race I also felt really comfortable and had a good feeling but unfortunately a little technical problem, which was no-one’s fault, ruled us out. We go to Brands with a bit of a buffer, it’s not a lot, but it’s a bit and I look forward to getting stuck in there whatever the weather.”