Eyes on the Prize
Kyle and the team set about the long drive down to Thruxton on Thursday, 1 August with one thing in mind: winning. The past few rounds have seen Kyle hanging on to the back of the best outfits in British Supersport, but that first overall win seemed just out of reach….
As always, the meeting started on the Friday morning with two Free Practice sessions during the day and it was the usual four to six riders who have continued to dominate the front of the field at every round of these various sessions & Qualifying. Kyle was showing to be very strong around this superfast circuit as expected and it was him and Supersport veteran and reigning Champion Jack Kennedy who were to battle it out for dominance of the races to come.
Qualifying was on the Saturday prior to the afternoon 12 Lap Sprint race and towards mid-session Kyle was hovering around the 4th place mark putting him on the second row of the grid, however he pitted with 10 minutes to go in this 30-minute qualifying slot and he put in a 1.16.540 lap to put him 2nd on the grid in the centre slot on the front row, sandwiched between the Integro Yamaha machines of Kennedy & Jones.
Kyle & Jack Kennedy were the only two riders to break into 1.16-minute laps, during the whole of the qualifying session.
Saturday Sprint Race
Firing off the line first of the 12 lap ‘Sprint Race’ was the Integro Yamaha of Brad Jones but by the time they crossed the line for the first lap current Champion Kennedy had found a way through and so had Kyle, to follow suit!
With Kyle Remaining in a tense game of follow the leader for much of the race, on Lap 7 of this 12-lap race the Safety Car was deployed, eventually going back into the pit lane at the start of the tenth lap, it was then a three-lap dash to battle for the win. Coming into the final corner on the very last lap, Kyle was able to slice his way through pass Kennedy to take the victory on track and secure his first overall race win on the GP2 machine. Kennedy finished top Supersport machine whilst Jones was able to hold off a late challenge from Seeley to take second Supersport rider.
Josh Owens was the second of the GP2 machines & Jack Scott was the third place man.
Kyle had finally crushed the curse of the Supersport machines for the season’s races by becoming the overall race winner, something that he was adamant he was eventually going to do!
Again in the Sunday morning warm-up, the two Gladiators of Kennedy & Ryde were jostling for position at the top of the leader board and both riders were again the only two to get down into the one minute sixteen second laps, so this was going to prove to be the showdown of what was going to come, later in the afternoon’s proceedings.
Sunday Sprint Race
In almost carbon copy of the previous day’s Sprint race, again it was the Integro Yamaha rider of Jones who grabbed the hole shot but Kyle had soon found a way through to take the lead as did Jones’s teammate Kennedy.
The leading trio of riders was able to build a small gap over the pursing pack but again with the Safety Car deployed on lap five; this brought the field back together and all the hard work by the leading three riders had all but evaporated.
So with the Safety Car turning down into the pitlane at the end of lap eight, it left just ten laps of intense battle to choose a winner out of these adrenalin jockeys.
Kyle and Jack Kennedy were eventually able to extend away from the third & fourth placed riders of Jones and Mason Law, and despite Kennedy taking the lead from Kyle for a brief moment Kyle soon snatched it back and finally again; took the overall race win with the Supersport Champion & machine rider finishing second on track to Kyle.
Kyle as well as being the overall winner in the race, also won his GP2 class, with Mason Law being 3rd overall in the race on a GP2 machine and 2nd in the GP2 class, whilst Josh Owens taking 3rd spot on the podium.
This takes Kyle’s wins in the GP2 class to 13 wins out of 14 races and 2 overall race wins. His next meeting is at the Beautiful Lincolnshire Woodland circuit of Cadwell Park, on the weekend of 16th to the 18th of August.
(Image Credit: Jamie Morris Photography).