EHA Racing’s David Allingham decided the make the step up to the Bennetts British Superbike class during the winter break and the happy-go-lucky Irishman has settled in well during the opening half of the 2019 season.
“Yeah, I think we’ve done okay so far and I’m learning all the time, so we can’t be too disappointed. But you always want more, don’t you?” smiled the flame haired Irishman, whose father Edward heads up the team, along with wife Gail who is the acting team manager.
With just one on-track DNF, which was unavoidable, when he ran into the wayward Quattro Plant Kawasaki of fellow Northern Irishman Glenn Irwin on the opening day at Silverstone – many would agree, that young Allingham’s transition to the Superbike class has been a successful one thus far.
Granted, the world hasn’t been set on fire just yet, but having made it through the opening Q1 televised qualifying session at the opening four rounds, and scored points at Oulton Park [15th] during round two; followed by a double score in the Knockhill races in Scotland [14-13] – the 24-year is settling in maturely.
He laughs at the suggestion. “I don’t think I’ve been called mature before,” he beamed, before recounting his season to date and surprisingly pinpointing his biggest heartbreak over his best achievement in the class.
‘Missing the races at Brands was so disappointing” he said candidly, before explaining. “I’d made it through to Q2 and had a pretty big crash in the session, with my bike ending up in the trees. I was trying hard and made a mistake after we’d flustered over a few things in the garage just before. It happens, but to miss out on the races the next day… that was heart-breaking for me.”
The team’s technical partner, CF Motorsports, were left with what looked like an achievable task. But despite almost 24-hours in hand to rebuild David’s EHA Racing Yamaha, the clock ran down on their best efforts – leaving the Irishman to sit out a full day’s racing.
“That was tough to take to be honest. I’m not sure who was more deflated about the whole episode, my dad or me,” said the former British Supersport race winner. “I think we learned a lot as a team that day.”
On the upside, the D-Bomb, as he has been monikered in the BSB paddock, has raised a few eyebrows amongst BSB team managers, and the proud Derry man doesn’t hide the fact that his vision remains in Superbike and nowhere else.
If I’m honest, this is where I want to be. In 2017 I was challenging for the British Supersport title and while I enjoyed it, I think I have always struggled to adapt to the way you need to ride to be consistently fast on a Supersport bike.”
Delving deeper in the technical side, the rangy EHA ace explained: “You look at Jack [Kennedy] and wee Seeley on our [EHA] bike, they have the perfect Supersport style and are nice and compact; I just think my style of riding and with being a little taller – the whole Superbike thing is more for me. I’m confident I can make it work, but it takes time.”
So, what are the goals for the rest of the season?
“I’ve actually found qualifying easier than I thought. Of course, we’d like to be making Q3 but that will come eventually. I’d rather be consistent and strong in Q2 before I throw caution to the wind and try and make that final top eight. We haven’t got the fastest bike out there – that’s a fact – but if we can improve the package and I can keep making small steps forward, then I think we can look to finish in the points more often than not.
“My goals? I want to start stronger and get in amongst that group fighting for the top ten. That’s the first goal and after that, it’s about being consistently in that position then moving forward. I want to be realistic,” he offered.
And looking ahead beyond 2019?
“I love the set-up at EHA Racing. It’s a family run team and anyone who knows Senior [how he refers to his father Edward], knows you don’t get a day out to burn off tyres and fuel. It’s run like a business and if we can’t win, we have to make progress. He runs it like he runs his business and it has to be like that,” said Allingham, who works part-time in the family business, learning his trade as a procurement manager in the building industry.
“I’d rather be a successful racer and buying nice cars and toys than building products,” he joked. “I won’t ride around in circles just for the fun of it. Those days are over. Yes, it’s a hobby, but this opportunity has been created for me to stand on the first rung of the British Superbike ladder. I want to make the most of it and when I climb onto the second and third rungs – which I believe I can – I want my dad to be able to sit back and enjoy it. That’s the plan anyway.”