It was a solid weekend for the Anvil Hire Yamaha team at Cadwell Park this Bank Holiday as James Rispoli, and Shaun Winfield worked hard in both races on Monday seeing Rispoli taking two 17th places, alongside Winfield achieving his best finish of the season in race two
The weekend got off to a great start with James and Shaun improving vastly in time, after working hard on the setups of their machines throughout the free practice sessions. James knocked off half a second from his best lap time, posting a 1:28.989.
Shaun improved by a full second to dip into the 1:29’s, achieving his best lap time around the Lincolnshire track, meaning both would make it into Sunday afternoon’s qualifying.
In qualifying both riders looked confident from the off with their machines, and quickly Rispoli improved once again in time, chipping away at his best lap by half a second posting a 1:28.413 leaving him in 20th, and unfortunately just missing out on Q2.
Winfield struggled in qualifying, and couldn’t improve on his best time set around the 2.1-mile circuit in the final free practice after losing a tow to the group of riders ahead, after they pulled out of their lap. Shaun posted a 1:30.052 after pushing hard on his own, placing him 30th on the grid for Monday’s first race.
Under sunny skies on Bank Holiday Monday race one saw both James and Shaun make great starts and after lap one ran in 17th and 25th respectively. Rispoli battled hard as the first Yamaha with John Hopkins, posting his fastest lap of the weekend, a 1:23.394 as he held off his fellow American. His tyre then started to lose grip and he dropped back to 17th as he crossed line to take the flag.
Shaun, from 25th after the first lap started to pick his way forward by the middle of the race he had worked his way into 23rd place, after posting his fastest lap of the weekend. However, with six laps to go his rear tyre lost grip and he couldn’t make a final attack on Howie Mainwaring-Smart who had just pulled away from the 23-year-old at the flag.
By virtue of their lap times in the first race Shaun moved up to 26th on the grid, with Rispoli leaping one place higher into 19th for race two.
From the lights both once again made great starts and by the end of lap five James was battling hard for 15th place at the back of the group. The American looked to pick his way forward, but his rear tyre lost grip in the final stages of the race and he just couldn’t make a move on the final few laps to move his way into the points, crossing the line in 17th.
Shaun made a great start again and moved his way into 23rd place by the fifth lap, and looked to move his way through the pack. ‘Munch’ just lost the tow to the group ahead but by the flag he crossed the line in 21st place.
After the weekend, James Rispoli said: “The beginning of the weekend was a little bit of a struggle, we were 3.3 seconds off the pace it wasn’t ideal by any means, but we kept chipping away. I kept firing laps in, which meant we cut it down to 1.5 seconds, and we worked hard as a team.
“Both races were just a little bit of a shame, I’m happy with the way I rode I’m fit and I’m riding really but there are still things we have to work at. We started at ground zero this weekend, we had a couple of changes within the team but we worked well considering that. I’m not pleased, it’s 17th, it doesn’t show anything but we’ll keep working hard and our time will come.
A pleased Shaun Winfield added: “It’s turned out to be a good weekend really, we struggled a little bit at the start and my pace was looking good, I was doing personal best lap times again like we have every weekend and we’re going quicker each round.
“I struggled a little bit over the ‘Mountain’ and I could have done with more time here. Race one I got great start and made up about four or five places on lap one, but I was losing time over the mountain and I had a gap to guys behind me so it was a little bit of a lonely race, which made it harder.
“Race two I got a good start again, but the group ahead just pulled away from me and I tried to catch them and I put a lap time in just off what I did in race one but they had gone. I had again another gap behind me and it was another lonely race but I’m feeling confident and I can’t wait to get to Oulton Park now.”
Team Owner Rob Winfield concluded: “It’s been a challenging weekend for both riders but they really pulled through on race day, which is great. James started off slowly and he really worked his through and on race day he pulled out two good rides and took two solid finishes. 17th isn’t where both James and the bike should be from their potential, but we’ll work harder in the break and at Oulton Park we should have better results.
“Shaun again has been great, he’s worked through a lot this weekend and has improved on his best lap time around the track, which is great. He rode really hard in both races but he just couldn’t bridge the gap to the group ahead, overall we’re pleased and we’ll move onto Oulton Park expecting more.”
The team will now head to Oulton Park for round nine of the Championship on the 9th/10th/11th September.
Kiko Giles @MotoGPKiko