The ePayMe Yamaha team of John Hopkins and Stuart Easton had a challenging opening round to the MCE British Superbike Championship at Silverstone, as both rider’s experienced technical DNFs in race two.
The former MotoGP star started the weekend off strongly and was inside the top three times during the free practice sessions and managed to finish the first race inside the top ten. Easton on the other hand retired to the pits with three laps remaining, and it was a bad case of déjà vu for the Scot as he had another technical DNF in race two.
Hopkins did not fare much better either and also made his way back to garage with an issue with his R1. It was a tough day at the office for team boss Tommy Hill, who knows all too well the struggles of a race weekend.
Both Hopkins and Easton ran with the SC0 tyres in race-two, and Hill admitted that it did not really work to their advantage, with both of his rider’s experiencing issues with the rear tyre.
“Basically we seemed to have an issue with both of our rear tyres. Stuart had some issues with chatter problems and John had a technical fault, but looking at the state of his tyre he probably wouldn’t have lasted the race to be fair,” said Hill, speaking to Bikesportnews.com.
“A bit of a head scratching moment - I felt we had the pace to run top three or top five. At the start of the weekend John was consistently in the top three so we thought we would have a good weekend.
“In race one we ran an SC1 and in race-two we went for the SC0, the slightly softer one, but it didn’t really work for us so back to the drawing board now. We have shown potential this weekend that we can run up the sharp end and John was going really well.”
But Hill and his dedicated team are vowing to fight back at the second round at Oulton Park and it is a case of ‘back to the drawing board’ to come back stronger in BSB.
Hill explained: “Stuart is still trying to find his feet with a few things. We are getting him more comfortable on the bike which is one of the first hurdles, and he was struggling to change gear which is a simple thing - but it is a massive huge thing and issue to have on the bike.
“So we have been hit by a few small technical glitches, which is frustrating as it is not an easy fix for us so back to the drawing board and will come back fighting at Oulton Park.
“We have shown some signs of good pace and I know it is still early days and the championship is very competitive this year and on a bad day you could be out of the points, so we are going to go back to the workshop now, take all the data that we have got from this weekend and move on forward at Oulton Park.”