Competing in their last race of the 2018 season, Mike and the rest of TeamMTR gave it their all for the Assen TT Circuit. Here’s their report:
Ducati TriOptions Cup
Assen, Round 8
With the lack of track time at Assen 12 months ago, the team were eager to get out on track and make full use of the 25-minute Free Practice session on the Friday morning. To the team’s delight, Mike reported that the base setup of the bike was really good and that there wasn’t much needed to make the bike competitive for the weekend. This showed in the final standings in Free Practice, where Mike finished in P9.
Looking to build on that in Qualifying, Mike was keen to get a good starting position and move up the order in the race. Unfortunately, on Mikes fastest lap the bike broke down on the exit of turn 11, forcing Mike to sit out the remainder of the Qualifying session. This meant Mike’s starting position was P15.
A good start saw Mike move up to 14th, and he was able to bring his lap times down throughout the race and cross the line in P8 to secure the teams second best result of 2018, and back into single figures.
After grabbing the team’s best dry result of the year in Race 1, team morale was high, and everyone was looking to end the season with another strong performance.
After the success of Race 1, Mikes starting position for Race 2 was P12, once again giving a much better opportunity to get away with the Top 10 and grab some more healthy points towards the final Championship position.
Another good start saw Mike keep his position into the first corner. Unfortunately, on Turn 4, Mike got hit by another rider, causing both him and the bike to flip uncontrollably into the gravel, ending the team’s 2018 campaign a lot earlier than anyone had anticipated.
Assen promised to be the team’s most successful overall meeting of 2018, with Mike and the bike working well together straight from the first Practice session. This is something which TeamMTR have struggled with all season, and it was a refreshing change for Mike to be able to ride the bike in almost the same way throughout every session of the weekend.
As ever with motorcycle racing, things don’t always work out as planned, so to come away from Assen with a non-point score in Race 2 was extremely disappointing for everyone, especially when you aren’t the guilty party. But it comes with the territory of racing motorcycle, and sometimes you can be caught up in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Assen was TeamMTR’s final race meeting of the year, so plans are already under way to get the bike repaired, and make plans for 2019, where TeamMTR hope to be on the grid again.
TeamMTR would like to thank every sponsor who has helped throughout 2018, as without them we wouldn’t be able to compete at this level and score regular points, and we look forward to continuing our partnership in 2019.