Britain’s Jack Kennedy and Brad Jones showed they could compete with the best in the world this weekend, chalking up double top ten results in the WorldSSP round at Donington Park on their Integro Yamaha R6s.
Jones finished in ninth after running in the top five for the first half of the race and Kennedy battled his way up to seventh after qualifying in 13th during a rain-hit session.
Qualifying was a tale of two sides of the garage as Brad managed to get a fast time in early on as rain started to make the circuit slippery while Jack didn’t manage to get a clear track before the weather meant times slowed up. Consequently Jones ended a stunning fifth fastest but Jack was disappointed to be starting the race 13th on the grid.
With Sunday morning dawning, it was nearly a complete disaster for Jack as he slipped off in warm-up, causing substantial damage to his bike, which the team managed to turn around for the mid-day race.
Jones had a superb start slotting into fourth and staying with the leading riders for nearly half of the race. As the laps ticked down, his lap times slowed slightly and he was engulfed in the ultra-competitive pack but he stayed on for an eye-catching ninth place finish. Amazingly his fastest lap was 1.9 seconds quicker than he did in the BSB round last year, showing how hard he was riding with some of the world’s best riders.
Kennedy came round after lap one in 12th and settled into a steady pace but then unlike many of his surrounding competitors, he upped his speed as the race wore on. Remaining consistent and determined he was seemingly taking a rider per lap in the closing stages, finishing an impressive seventh at the flag.
“I’m happy with the way the weekend finished after such a crazy start with the bad qualifying and tipping off this morning which we definitely didn’t need,” said Kennedy.
“I knew I had decent race pace so I was steady to start with and we also had the front brake coming into the bar, so I wound in some more at the lever and then we were nice and settled. The lap times were really strong as the race went on and I manged to get by a few lads for a decent finish. The whole crew put a big effort in this week so I’m glad we could repay them with two good results.
Jones added: “It was a tough race to be honest! The first eleven laps were great and I felt comfortable with the fast pace but then the tyre dropped off a little and with less fuel load the bike was moving around loads so my lap times dropped. I’ve raced against some really experienced riders this weekend which has been invaluable and enjoyed the whole weekend massively.”