Mikey Large-Taylor was reminded of the harsh realities of motorcycle racing after a frustrating opening round of the National Superstock Championship.
Following an enjoyable weekend at Silverstone, Large-Taylor Racing endured a more difficult time at Oulton Park in their first foray into the cut and thrust of National Superstock 600 racing.
The North Kelsey rider’s first-time out in anger on the new R6 Yamaha was not helped by unhelpful conditions as hopes of a dry weekend to get more miles under his belt went out of the window.
The first free practice session was held on a cold and greasy track which was neither totally wet, nor dry.
Mikey was caught out at turn one on only his second flying lap, and fell, testing out his new RST leathers and HJC crash helmet.
The damage to the bike was repaired as best as possible in time for free practice two, this time held in the dry.
But Mikey could not get a good setting and struggled to keep the front wheel down on acceleration out of corners.
A change of gearing for qualifying enabled him to take four seconds off his previous best lap time so things were looking positive overnight ahead of racing.
Overnight rain ion the track was exacerbated by a vehicle which dropped diesel all around the circuit, and the morning warm-up was cancelled as track staff cleared the track.
The circuit was hit with several rain showers during the morning, followed by clear spells which made tyre choice critical.
Mikey initially decided to go for dry tyres, but shortly before the pit lane opened the circuit was hit with another shower, persuading the Lincolnshire rider to change to the safer option of full wets.
But in keeping with the changeable weekend, the track dried completely, making the bike virtually unrideable.
Mikey took the safe option and pulled in after four laps.
“I’m really frustrated about how the weekend went,” he said. ”I hoped for some good track time with some of the best Superstock riders in the country, and to learn as much as I could from them, but things just did not go our way.
“You have to learn from experiences like this and I feel as though the team learned a lot about the new bike over the weekend, which is good for the future.”
The team now moves on to Donington Park from May 24 to 26 where Mikey will be back out on the Kawasaki for the Junior Supersport Championship, looking to add big points to his championship tally.
Spectators going to the Donington meet are welcome to visit the team in the paddock.