Tsingtao Kawasaki’s Gary Mason bagged his first MCE British Superbike front row since before all this was fields when he took advantage of sometimes ‘scary’ conditions to take third place in today’s Silverstone qualifying session.
The Lichfield man opted for a full slick setup on a drying track in the third and final timed period and said that in some places the track was fully wet which made life interesting, especially braking and turning in from the flat-out Hangar Straight into Stowe.
Mason was behind Milwaukee Yamaha’s Josh Brookes for a part of the session but said he didn’t want to get in the way of the title contender but then knew he had done a half-decent laptime as he managed to catch back up to the Bringelly man.
“It was quite scary, especially into the last complex because the sun was shining so that’s why I went to a dark visor. The clear one was reflecting the track, and it was weird and difficult to see,” said Mason, speaking to bikesportnews.com this evening.
“I went for that, which worked in my favour, but I still didn’t know where it was wet or dry in places until I went over it and that was a bit whoah as both wheels were drifting and then gripping. I kept the heat in the tyre and at the end of Hangar Straight into Stowe it was wet completely so you would feel it move, then go on to your knee and then drive.
“I let Josh go on the lap but I knew it must have been half decent because I started to catch him up at the end. Of course, the conditions played into my hands a bit. It’s a bit of bravery but I went on to full slicks as it was only going to get drier. Some of it was heart in the mouth though.
“In a full dry race we are going to struggle but if it’s like it was today you never know. For a team with our budget, it’s great though, the boys have worked so hard and it’s a great reward for us all.”