Gearlink Kawasaki News

8 April 2018

An emotional double win at Donington Park

The first round of the Dickies British Supersport season was always going to be an emotional rollercoaster for the team following the sad passing of team-owner Norma de Bidaph with the team dedicating the season to her. In the opening race Ben Currie took a stunning win and backed that up in race two with his second win of the weekend. His team- mate James Westmoreland, despite limited track time on the bike, took solid points finishing fifth place in race one and sixth in race two.

Ben was consistently at the top of the time sheets throughout the practice sessions and qualified in second place on the grid for race one with James next to him in third.

Ben gained a fantastic start and led the pack for several laps before being passed mid-race. He rode a very confident race and was happy to sit in second place before making the pass that secured him the win by 0.2 sec. James was fourth after the opening lap and despite taking a bit of a gamble with tyres in tricky conditions worked hard to to secure a solid fifth place.

For race two Ben started from pole with James behind him in fourth place.The track conditions were drying but in the cold conditions Ben opted for full wets knowing he would need a good start in case the track dried out a lot. He got a fantastic start and was soon 5.5 seconds in the lead after lap one. He just continued to extend his lead, eventually taking his second win of the weekend by a massive 24.3 seconds. James had a strong start in fourth place but lost a couple of places to finish in a solid sixth place.

For Ben it was fitting that with the pre and post race tributes to Norma he was able to dedicate the first win of the season to her and then back that up with the double. 

Carl Phillips is new to the Bennets British Superbike Championship and the team have worked hard throughout the difficult weather conditions to help him push further forwards. He qualified for race one in 24th place and finished in 24th. For race two he started from 26th place on the grid working his way up to 20th place before retiring due to tyre choice. 

Team Manager - Michael de Bidaph - "This weekend has been ten times harder than i imagined it would be . Especially as it is the first time that i have been to a race meeting without my darling Norma. The decision to carry on was a hard one to make but i know that it is exactly what Norma would have wanted me to do and i know that she will always be with me.

All the riders have done an excellent job all weekend in terrible conditions. For Ben to secure the double race win is the perfect tribute to Norma. He has been consistent and fast in every session and when he crossed the line in race one i just broke down in tears full of mixed emotions, happiness and sadness.

I think Ben surprised everyone in the second race, even himself, no one could touch him and he was in a league of his own. I am so grateful to him for the two wins this weekend, they were very special.

Westy has not had much time on the bike and he is still adjusting to riding the 600 machine after his time on the Superbike. The conditions were far from ideal to get more laps in; he stayed in one piece and secured two solid results. I know, and he knows, there is more to come and I'm very sure the results he wants are not far away.

I am impressed with Carl and how well he has settled into the team and onto the Superbike. He has not had many rides on the bike and we used this weekend to collect as much data as possible to help him move forwards for the rest of the season. We knew it would be tough but we will keep chipping away at it.

Finally i must say a really huge thank you to the BSB Paddock for their support, kind words and encouragement this weekend. I must also thank Eurosport for their beautiful tribute to Norma, which is very special for me." 

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posted by The Team at 11:43

24 October 2017

A win and podiums at season finale at Brands Hatch

It was a tense and exciting end to the season for the team in front of a massive crowd at the final round of the Dickies British Supersport Championship at Brands Hatch. Andrew Irwin had another fantastic weekend with his first Supersport win and then followed it up in the final race with a third place. Ben Currie continued his run of good form with great second and fourth places. The pair ended the season on a high note with Andrew in second place in the overall Championship standings and Ben third. It was a superb result for the team and a first to see both our riders on the overall Championship Podium.

Andrew and Ben were on form all weekend throughout the practice and qualifying sessions. Andrew qualified in third place for the first race with Ben fifth. They both got great starts with Andrew going to the front followed by Ben in second. They rode an exceptional race keeping the rest of the field at bay ensuring that Andrew secured his first win of the season with Ben in second place to secure another fantastic 1-2 for the team.

Everything was to play for for the second race as Andrew was now just 18 points behind the Championship leader having been at one stage in the season over 100 points behind. Andrew started from fifth place on the grid with Ben eighth. Both had great starts and were in third and fourth when the safety car came out. They were both locked in battles when the race resumed finishing the race with Andrew third and Ben fourth.

James Westmoreland qualified in 22nd place for race one in the MCE British Superbike Championship and finished in the points in 14th. He was placed on the grid in 16th for the second race, finishing 18th. For the third and final race of the year he started from 22nd position, finishing in 21st. 

Team Manager Michael de Bidaph - "This year has been fantastic, Andrew and Ben have really excelled in the Supersport class and to finish second and third in the Championship standings is something we have never done and is a very special feeling.

After the Championship leader crashed out in race one we knew that the Championship once again was all to play for. Andrew finally took that long overdue win that he deserved after so many second places and i cannot praise Ben enough for the role that he played, it just shows what a close knit team we are.

Andrew had a small chance of winning the Championship and he rode hard in race two to finish just 13 points behind the Championship winner, Keith Farmer. Congratulations to him and his team, each race has provided some great racing and Andrew and Ben played a huge part in that.

With James in the Superbike class we have continued to make progress all year and have scored more Championship points than we have ever done in this class.

I have been privileged this year to work with three exceptional riders, James, Andrew and Ben. It has made the job an absolute pleasure and we go into the off season feeling very happy aand relaxed with racing. It has been very enjoyable and we were lucky to have three great people in the team.

I must say a huge thank you to every member of the team for their hard work and dedication. Also a thank you to Rock Oil, KMUK and all our loyal team sponsors for their continued support."

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posted by The Team at 17:12

6 October 2017

A win and Podiums at Assen

It was looking set to be another amazing weekend for the team at round 11 of the Dickies British Supersport Championship at Assen. Ben Currie secured his third fantastic win on the trot and was battling for another race win in race two when he had a coming together with another rider which saw him crash out. Andrew Irwin continued his great run of form to secure another double podium with two second places.

The pair had a great qualifying session, Ben secured his first qualifying pole position for the first race with Andrew lining up on the front row with him, in third place.

The weather conditions throughout the weekend were mixed and just before the first race the rain came down and after a slight delay the race was reduced to 10 laps. Ben once again showed his form in the wet conditions and took off from the start leading every lap until the flag taking his third win in succession. Andrew was locked in a fierce battle in the opening laps for the second podium slot but managed to break away to take another impressive 1-2 for the team.

It was dry conditions for the second race and with Ben once again sitting on pole and Andrew in second. Ben got a flying start and was leading the race with Andrew in second. A thrilling battle was then to take place over the remaing 14 laps with four different leaders throughout the race.

Ben led into the final lap and was looking strong to take his fourth win when Keith Farmer made a strong move on him which forced Ben to crash. The incident was investigated and Keith was docked time and positions for the move. With Ben out it was left to Andrew to fight it out as best he could on the final lap to take yet another impressive second place. 

James Westmoreland qualified in a great 10th position in the wet qualifying sessions in the MCE British Superbike Championship. In the dry conditions for the first race he struggled to find the pace he needed and finished in 20th place and a technical problem forced him out in race two.

Team Manager Michael de Bidaph -" I'm once again delighted with Ben and Andrew's performances this weekend. To secure another 1-2 in the opening race was fantastic and great to see them both up there and having such good pace..

It was looking set that it might happen again in race two in the dry conditions. They were both on the front row and looking comfortable in the race. I really feel for Ben with the crash but the organisers dealt with the situation well and therefore it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.

Ben and Andrew have really upped their game in the latter half of the season which I am delighted to see. They have shown great pace in every session and have been rewarded with the results. We are looking forward to ending the season on a high with both of them at Brands Hatch.

It was another difficult weekend in the Superbike class for James and we hope that we can makes some suitable changes to help him get some decent results to end the season at Brands."

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posted by The Team at 11:50

24 September 2017

Double win and Podiums at Oulton Park

It was a weekend to celebrate for the team at round ten of the Dickies British Supersport Championship at Oulton Park. Ben Currie secured his first win of the season and then followed it up by winning the second race as well. Andrew Irwin gained brilliant second places in both races for a perfect weekend for the team.

Ben was disappointed after Silverstone and was eager to make amends at Oulton Park, a track he has had previous success. He was riding well all weekend and managed to qualify in fifth place on the grid for race one. The rain began to fall shortly before the race but he was feeling confident. He got a great hole-shot and soon built up a huge lead, riding a comfortable race he managed to win by a huge 11.4 seconds.

For race two he was placed on pole position, this time a fully wet race from start to finish. Once again he got a great start and was soon locked in a battle for the lead with two other riders including Andrew. It was then a battle between Ben and Andrew with another rider closing them down in the latter stages and the three dicing it out for the win. Ben gained the upper hand over the finish line to win by just 0.2 seconds from Andrew in a thrilling race and now moves up to third in the Championship standings.

Andrew was also having a stunning weekend; he qualified in second place for race one. He got a great start and despite Ben disappearing into the distance he was swapping positions for second place for most of the race and was eager to secure a solid second position. 

For race two he was fifth on the grid and was locked in a three way battle, including Ben, for the lead. He rode a fantastic race to finish in another second place and moves up to second in the Championship standings.

James Westmoreland was able to secure another couple of valuable Championshiip points in the MCE British Superbike Championship. He qualified in 20th place for race one and in tricky conditions managed to finish in 14th place. He started from 17th position for race two but had to pull in with set-up issues.

Team Manager Michael de Bidaph - "I am so pleased for both Supersport riders, Ben and Andrew. The weekend went well from start to finish both of them performing well in the wet and dry conditions.

Ben was on another level in race one having got to the front and just took off. Andrew rode a sensible tough race fending off the Champioship leader to secure a great second place.

We opted not to go out in the warm-up session as it was too close to race two just in case anything happened. It was nerve wracking watching the pair of them fight tooth and nail to the end. I struggled to watch it but totally delighted it ended with another one-two. The team, Ben and Andrew have all worked so hard all year and everyone deserved this. 

It was another tricky weekend for James in the Superbike class and we struggled to get a good set-up for him around Oulton. We managed to score a few more points in race one and hopefully we can get some better results at the final two rounds at Assen and Brands Hatch" 

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posted by The Team at 12:47

Triple Podium at Silverstone

It was a great weekend for the team at Round nine of the the Dickies British Supersport Championship at Silverstone. Andrew Irwin gaining two second places and his team-mate Ben Currie was third in the first race and was leading the second race when wet conditions caught him out and he sadly crashed out.

Andrew was once again searching for that elusive first win in race one having qualified in third place. He got a good start and was soon into the lead and looking comfortable only for him to be pushed wide by the eventual winner just losing out on the win by 0.045s.

He started from second on the grid for race two which was declared a wet race. He got a good start and was once again locked in a battle for the lead but could not stay with them in the extemely wet conditions and dropped back to fourth. His team-mate crashed whilst in the lead shortly followed by another front runner whilst Andrew stayed on to bring home another fantastic second place. 

Ben once again continued his strong form throughout the weekend and was constantly at the sharp end on the time sheets during practice and qualifying. He started race one from fourth place on the grid; gained the hole-shot and was soon mixing it with two other riders,including his team-mate, for the lead. He finished in a great third place with just 0.131s separating the three riders in a fantastic race.

For race two he started from third place on the grid in what was declared a wet race after heavy rain just prior to the start. He got an incredible start extending his lead to a huge eight seconds in the treacherous conditions. Gradually those chasing him reeled him in although he still had a two second advantage with a lap and a half to go before being caught out by the wet conditions and crashed out.

James Westmoreland had a really strong weekend in the MCE British Superbike Championship. He scored points in all three races with 14th places in the first two races and a stuunning fourth place in a wet race three. The weather came in hard before the third race and it was really a race of the brave as to who finished. James rode an intelligent race and was able to stay on in horrendous conditions to bring it home.

Team Manager Michael de Bidaph -" It was certainly an up and down weekend for the Supersport riders. Ben and Andrew have been up at the top of the time sheets all weekend qualifying well for the first race.

It was so unfortunate for Andrew not to take his first win as he looked strong but just missed out. Ben also rode an incredible race and i am very pleased with his performance, he has made some big steps forward and really challenging for the win as well.

For race two both riders were on the front row and Ben made an unbelievable start in tricky conditions. He had a huge lead and looked really strong, sadly just being caught out in the wet conditions. We were so disappointed for him as he had worked so hard. Andrew rode a solid race and he knew he did not have the pace in the wet but stayed on to secure another great second.

With "Westy" we struggled with set up during practice and qualifying which were dry. He was fortunate to get some points in the second race as we did have a few set up issues. For the third race the conditions were appalling, he got a great start and made up several places on the first lap staying on to gain a great fourth place for the team. I am absolutely delighted, well done James!"

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posted by The Team at 11:27 by E2E Solutions