Gary John­son ................................

Fast Bikes - - CONTENTS -

You might have read last month that we have had a bit of a last minute change of ma­chin­ery for the Ma­cau GP, as I had a kind of­fer from the Lee Hardy Rac­ing Briggs Equip­ment Kawasaki team to run me on the ZX-10R that Jake Dixon has been rac­ing in BSB... and luck­ily it goes as well as it looks! We worked re­ally hard with it while we were there and found lots of ways to im­prove the setup, which they had strug­gled with through­out the year. My god I’ve got a lot of re­spect for Jake with the speed he has gone and the re­sults he has got on that bike as they are just awe­some, but I think we have trans­formed it into a much eas­ier and bet­ter bike to ride for next sea­son. Well, cer­tainly for me any­ways…

So prac­tice went well and I knew I had the pace to be at least fifth, but un­for­tu­nately I got held up on my qual­i­fy­ing lap so we ended up hav­ing to start from 10th, which is tough round the tight Ma­cau street cir­cuit. I knew what I needed to do though and the most im­por­tant thing was to get a good start, and within the first few laps I was run­ning sev­enth. One place in front of me was Davo John­son on his BMW S1000RR which was pretty darn quick, but soon as his tyre stared to wear I man­aged to make a pass with my eas­ier go­ing ZX-10R. Once in sixth place with some clear track in front of me I was able to drop a cou­ple of sec­onds a lap and gen­tly close in on Con­nor (Cum­mins) and Martin (Jes­sopp), and it was lin­ing up to be a re­ally good race.

Un­for­tu­nately though, it all be­comes ir­rel­e­vant when the red flags are dis­played and you hear of the dev­as­tat­ing ac­ci­dent which oc­curred with Dan He­garty – it was just hor­ren­dous to see. When some­thing like that hap­pens no­body gives a f**k about the race as we are all just one big fam­ily, and I’m send­ing all my thoughts to his fam­ily and friends.

That said, as far as the rac­ing goes the team and all the me­chan­ics were great. The elec­tron­ics guy Tim Seed and the crew chief Glen Richards both re­ally know their stuff, while hav­ing Ben Stafford and my mate Pis­tol work­ing with us made it a great en­vi­ron­ment to be in. I was awarded sixth place over­all which I would have been ab­so­lutely chuffed with be­fore the race, as it’s al­ways good to ex­pe­ri­ence yet dif­fi­cult work­ing with a new team when you’re straight into a race week­end. I cer­tainly wouldn’t rule out rid­ing their bike at a later date though, as I think we could do good things to­gether. Watch this space!

We have all come to Thai­land now and there is a big gang of us so we’ve been out on go-karts to­day. We’re all just par­ty­ing, hav­ing a bit of R&R and ev­ery­body has risen a glass to Dan while we are out here. The girls are com­ing out to join us in a cou­ple of days and we are go­ing to go and do some is­land hop­ping. It’s off to El Nido in Palawan and then over to the Philip­pines, so per­fect to top up the old tan. I hope you’re all en­joy­ing the Novem­ber weather back home!

Are gang­sters meant to smile?

Gazhas been do­ing his­best­tolook so­phis­ti­cated. Gaz­did well be­fore theMa­cau race’s tragic ac­ci­dent.

No com­ment. We don’tsee the ap­peal ei­ther.

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