BSB Race 3
BSB 2021
Round 1

A weekend of positives despite challenges at Oulton Park

gb Oulton Park

It's been a weekend of learnings for the Honda Racing UK team at the opening round of the 2021 Bennetts British Superbike Championship.

A weekend of positives despite challenges at Oulton Park

It's been a weekend of learnings for the Honda Racing UK team at the opening round of the 2021 Bennetts British Superbike Championship, but despite the challenges thrown at them by Oulton Park, the Honda team are leaving the Cheshire circuit with plenty of positives.

Improvements have been made with Glenn Irwin improving his lap times over the weekend since the last outing in 2020. But Oulton Park is still a circuit that continues to taunt the Honda team, producing challenges for the set-up of the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP with its physical layout. 

Glenn Irwin comes away from Round 1 with 23 points and is ninth in the series standings after collecting three top-ten finishes across the weekend. The team made a gamble in the final race with the Fireblades set-up, which paid off, although not fully showing on the times or results. 

Glenn started the race from 10th on the grid but was pushed off track by another rider early on causing him to drop places to 19th. Getting his head down wanting to make up the lost places, Glenn worked hard aboard the Fireblade SP to make his way through the pack to come home 10th. 

Takumi Takahashi put on a brave face taking part in both of the day's races, but with weakness in his shoulder having dislocated it during official testing Takumi pulled out from Race 2. During today's final race the BSB rookie stayed out for the duration of the 18 laps coming home in an impressive 17th place having gained experience and confidence at the track. 

Ryo Mizuno continued to push on learning the circuit but unfortunately crashed out during the second race and with swelling to his hand he was forced to miss the final race. After the crash Ryo was taken to the medical centre with initial X-rays showing no fractures, however the team will seek further medical advice next week once the swelling has gone down. 

The team now looks forward to the second round of the championship at Knockhill in Scotland, where a few weeks ago they enjoyed a successful test and hope to fight towards the sharp end. Round 2 will take place with a two-day race event format on Saturday 10 - Sunday 11 July. 

Glenn Irwin
Glenn Irwin 2
Honda Racing UK
It has been a testing weekend, but we are coming away having learnt a lot. The third race was probably our best ride of the weekend, we made a big change to the Fireblade taking a bit of a risk, but we wanted to try something to give us an insight here when we come back at the end of the year, and potentially at other circuits. The Fireblade was working really well in that race, but I had a collision on lap one with another rider which set me back to 20th and it was tough from there. Everyone we caught we were able to pass immediately. It was a promising final race with our worst result of the weekend, but the best in terms of the development we managed to achieve with the Fireblade. Hats off to Jason with his three wins this weekend!

Ryo Mizuno
Ryo Mizuno 88
Honda Racing UK
I did not want to end my first weekend in BSB with a crash, so it's been a sad ending. I had a good feeling in the morning practice and was hoping to get a better understanding of the bike during the two races, but crashed early in Race 2 and was not able to start the final race. I am sure that I am getting a better understanding of the BSB Fireblade every time I ride it, so I will keep working on it and look forward to Knockhill in a few weeks. 

Takumi Takahashi
Takumi Takahashi 13
Honda Racing UK
It has been a difficult weekend for my first race in BSB, but I have enjoyed the laps here and getting to learn the circuit more, which will help when we return later this season. Race 2 was very difficult to finish, so I had to pull in with the same reason as yesterday as my shoulder is not strong enough. In Race 3 I tried a different riding style, it was good to finish the race but it was difficult for me this weekend. I will come back stronger for Round 2! 

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