MotorSport Vision press release:
Sylvain Guintoli heads for Oulton Park and the Holiday Monday second round of the ViSK British Superbike Championship in association with Pirelli determined to increase his slender seven points advantage over Leon Camier, but in the early season exchanges the Frenchman can expect some lively challenges.
Guintoli, a former MotoGP racer, will be experiencing the demands of the picturesque Cheshire circuit for the first time aboard the Worx Crescent Suzuki that powered him to a victory and a second place in the Brands Hatch opener – the Frenchman has ridden the course at a trackday but will need to learn fast as he takes on a pack of riders who know this circuit well.
Camier, the winner of the second race in Kent on Easter Monday, expects to be up front again on his Airwaves Yamaha, but it is his team-mate James Ellison who could be the man to beat. The Cumbrian rider has a strong pedigree at Oulton, having clinched the 2004 British Superbike Cup there, while last season, on his return to domestic action from MotoGP and American racing, he took a pair of seconds with Hydrex Honda.
“I’ve good memories of racing there, having enjoyed some of the best results of my career there,” enthused Ellison who believes that he is fully up to speed having worked extensively on the development of his all-new bike.
“I needed to ride conservatively in the opening round, our first time time with the bike, to ensure that I finished both races and scored good points,” he added. “Now we know what the bike is capable of, I am confident that I can push on and be competitive from the start.”
Glen Richards, riding HM Plant Honda, could have a big say about all of that, as he continues his quest for a third title in as many years – the Australian has taken Superstock and Supersport glory and is currently well place, after a second in the opener, to press on for the sport’s elite domestic title.
Flying Scot Stuart Easton, fresh from his debut into the World Superbike series at Assen, will be keen to underline his speed and style by adding to his Brands Hatch podium finish with the Hydrex Honda team – the former Supersport champion could face an in-team duel with Karl Harris who is eager to taste the victor’s champagne for the first time in Superbike action.
Chris Walker, like Ellison, has enjoyed some memorable performances at Oulton Park, and, re-united with the Rob McElnea Yamaha team and riding in Motorpoint Henderson colours he will be keen to be at the sharp-end of the pack, along with his team-mate and rival, Michael Rutter who sports North West 200 Coca Cola Zero backing for his R1.
Julien da Costa and Simon Andrews aim for continuing consistency aboard their MSS Colchester Kawasakis with Buildbase Kawasaki riders John Laverty and Tristan Palmer aiming for stronger results in the opener, a sentiment shared by Relentless Suzuki duo Ian Lowry and Atsushi Watanabe.
Gary Mason, riding the Quay Garage Honda, expects to maintain his winning spree in the Mirror.co.uk Cup, though under pressure from Martin Jessopp (Riders Racing Honda) and Ultimate Racing Yamaha’s Peter Hickman.