Flying Scot Stuart Easton is aiming for maiden race winning glory in his home round of the ViSK British Superbike Championship in association with Pirelli at Knockhill this Sunday, 5 July.
Riding the Hydrex Honda, the former Supersport Champion, has put together a string of strong performances so far, including two second placings in five podium finishes, but at the Fife circuit, Easton believes that he can head off the threat posed by the two dominant Airwaves Yamahas in the hands of series leading Leon Camier and James Ellison.
“I can’t wait to get there. It is my home round and I hope that all the Scottish fans will come and get behind me. The last time the fans had a Scottish winner was probably Steve Hislop so if I can replicate that, and then of course I would be celebrating with them.
“I am third overall in the standings so I am in a strong position to challenge the Airwaves Yamahas and if I am going to do it anywhere it has to be in Scotland. If I can pull it off I will be buying everyone a drink,” said Easton with a big smile.
Re-inforcing Easton in the Hydrex equipe is Karl Harris, another former Supersport title holder, who has achieved a couple of second placings already, and he too is long overdue a victory in the elite series.
They face tough challenges with the Airwaves duo keen to put a tough weekend of ‘wild-card’ action in the World series, in which both Camier and Ellison crashed heavily, behind them with a return to winning ways.
Camier has won eight of the ten races, including three daily doubles, as he has opened up a 55 points advantage over Ellison who has won once and piled up five second placings to be second in the standings, but only 22 points clear of Easton, leaving all to play for the young Scot.
Expect to see the HM Plant Honda riders adding to the front-running action. Josh Brookes has settled into the groove, with three third placings in the last three races, and the rider with World Supersport experience under his belt, is confident that he can learn this tight, short circuit which he is racing for the first time.
Brookes will benefit from the experience of his team-mate Glen Richards who has strong form at Knockhill, while Michael Rutter will be at his most determined to secure strong results as he continues to deputise for the injured Sylvain Guintoli aboard the Worx Crescent Suzuki. Ian Lowry, riding Relentless Suzuki, will add to the thrills at the sharp-end.
Simon Andrews, fresh from his ‘wild-card’ experiences in the World series, will be maintaining his maturing speed and style aboard the MSS Colchester Kawasaki while John Laverty, riding a similar machine, but in Buildbase colours, is keen to build on his Snetterton good form.
Keep an eye also on the Motorpoint Henderson Yamaha in the hands of Chris Walker while Jon Kirkham rides the North West 200 Coca Cola Zero Yamaha.
And, in the Mirror.co.uk Cup Gary Mason, riding the Quay Garage Honda, will be bidding for further victories to maintain his sizeable advantage in this race within a race for independent teams.
Ahead of the practice and qualifying – including the Swan Combi 50 Roll for Pole grid decider – through Saturday and Sunday, and the races on Sunday, there is a special preview event “Superbikes in the Square presented by Swan” in George Square, Glasgow on Wednesday.