Race report of the regional event held at Midvaal Raceway 10/11 Feb 2006.
Friday practice was unofficial, true to Midvaal's style that meant no marshals or paramedics which fortunately were not needed by anyone throughout the day. It had rained quite heavily the night before and a few puddles were still dotted around the track but that didn't seem to affect time. I started off well and immediately had my time down by about a second from the previous Sunday and was doing my best ever times at that circuit consistently. By the end of the day I was a full 1.5 seconds faster than Sunday and was well pleased with myself!
Saturday morning - Rain and more rain. Very little shelter outside of the garages and pit garages that leak meant running around in the rain and getting dripped on was the way things were. Got to the track a little late as I just misjudged how tight the times were and I still needed to get wet tires on the bike. Rushed like mad to get everything done but managed to do this intime for qualifying. My first ever session in the rain was actually better than I had expected and i was starting to get into the grove when the chequered flag was shown. I qualified in 8th for the race and was extremely happy with that and really hoping the weather would remain the same. 45 minutes before my race the sun came out and the track rapidly dried which caught all of us off guard which meant that I decided wet tires just weren't the way to go not 20 minutes before the race. Mad panic later and I realised there just wasn't time to do both front and back, so I decided to just run a rear semi-slick and the front wet. Unfortunately I ended up with a almost worn out rear tire (completely my fault, I just wasn't thinking straight)!.
I got a great start, up to 6th for the first corner and I was running nicely although the top 5 quickly ran away from me. Lap 5 of the 10 and my front started sliding quite badly and not long after that the rear too. I had to make a decsion, crash or finish and I chose to finish. I did my best but couldn't hold off the chasing pack and ended up finishing the race in 11th position, much to my frustration and anger. 3 minutes later and it was raining again, ARGHHHH!!
Race 2, it's now raining quite heavily. We did our sighting lap and warm-up lap but a red flag was shown on the last corner indiciating for us to go back into pits. The race and the rest of the races were cancelled due to heavy lightning in the area and the marshals being concerned for their saftey. I can't argue that, I didn't fancy racing in those conditions but I wasn't going to chicken out either! So got soaking wet down to my boxers and got to play in the rain a bit but that was the end of the day.
11th overall means I did get some points and I'm not far off my aim of a few top 10 finishes through the season... Can't wait until the next race on the 25th of March.
2 Pics - both turn 1. I can see from my form that I wasn't riding confidently and was watching the front wheel too closely during the race. My head is no where near where it should be but I still like the pictures!