Honda pair fight back on smoother Fireblade
Silverstone saw a huge Honda resurgence with both Dan Linfoot and Jason O’halloran running right at the front in both races and Linfoot posting the fastest race lap of the weekend. Those performances tasted particularly sweet for Aussie O’halloran, who was having his first race since breaking his leg and wrist at Thruxton last August.
“The conditions have been really tough and it’s not easy to be dealing with that in my first race back after a long time,” O’halloran said after finishing sixth and fourth.
The Fireblade may have won the championship in 2013 with Alex Lowes, but it’s now in its eighth season of competition and up against the much newer technology of the Kawasakis, BMWS and Ducatis. Much of the development of these new bikes has revolved around electronic controls and so the arrival of BSB’S control ECU has nullified a lot of their advantage.
“We spend days and days on the dyno all winter long,” O’halloran’s crew chief, Paul Williamson said.
“We did a lot of work to the engine in 2014 and now we have tried a lot of specs to make the bike easier to ride for this season. Last year there was no problem with speed but it was maybe a little bit of a handful. We have lost some power low down and gained some on top but we have tried to make it easier for the riders to get on the throttle.”
Still operating without fly-bywire throttle has made it harder for Honda to control the power and forced the team to make improvements in other areas.
“Last year we did a lot of work on ignition but that upset power delivery and caused problems with the chassis,” he explained.
“We have made a smoother engine now that is better for the rider, for the tyre and the chassis.”