After a 24 hour delay due to persistent rain and bad light the 46th edition Macau Motorcycle Grand Prix finally took to the track on Sunday when Lincolnshire’s Gary Johnson rode to a fine fourth place at the end of the 10 lap race.
The 3.8-mile circuit is reputed to be one of the most dangerous circuits in the world but Johnson, who was riding for the Quattro Plant Motorsport team, sailed through qualifying to start the race in the first wave of riders from fourth place.
“The qualifying session was red flagged because of poor light which was good for me because a few seconds later the tyre deflated and I would have been a lot further down the grid,” said Johnson.
Road Rrcing specialist Johnson, from Broughton near Brigg, was quick to anticipate the lights at the start and led the riders into the first corner. But he had to fight off the attention of eventual race winner Michael Rutter, who demoted him to second place at the end of the lap. He held station for the first couple of laps battling for position with John McGuinness, but the Morecombe Missile made a mistake and ran wide leaving Johnson in a clear second place.
By lap four Johnson was being rapidly reeled in by Martin Jessopp who had made a poor start and he snatched second place from the Lincolnshire ace leaving him to fight it out with Simon Andrews, who demoted him to fourth place one lap later.
Johnson completed the remainder of the 10 laps in a comfortable fourth place just missing out on a podium finish. On his first visit to Macau, teammate Steve Heneghan completed the course in 18th place to take the best newcomer award.
“I am well pleased with that result,” said Johnson. “I had a good few battles in the race and we just managed to complete the 10 laps before it got dark.”
The Macau GP was the final event of the season for Johnson but he will be back next year and will soon be in a position to announce his plans for 2013.