MOORSIDE motorcycle racer Ashley Beech continued to be troubled by technical issues in round three of the National Superstock 1000 Championship at Oulton Park.
And his team were using the break before round four at Snetterton on June 17 to resolve the suspension troubles.
With tight corners and climbs and descents, Oulton Park is regarded by many riders as a technical track and difficult to find that perfect set up for a race bike. Suspension and gearing settings may be good for some parts of the circuit but may not suit others so teams have to find a compromise.
Beech opts to use just second to fifth gears as even along the fast straits he won’t hit top gear and it will mean less gear changes in and out of the fast corners.
It has been a season of mixed fortunes so far with a crash in round one at Donington Park and a double points finish at Brands Hatch two weeks ago, but there was still worries that his BMW S1000RR race bike was still suffering the effects of the crash.
“We replaced the front forks and repaired and checked the frame but the bike still doesn’t feel quite right,” he said.
Beech and his team attended a test day prior to this latest round and were happy that progress is being made and lap times were encouraging.
Friday practice in glorious weather saw Beech quickly settled into his rhythm and finished the first of two practice sessions in 19th place and after some changes to the geometry of his bike he improved his lap time to end the second session 20th quickest.
Despite overnight adjustments to suspension, Beech was unable to improve his lap times in qualifying and dropped to 26th quickest and would start the race in the middle of row nine on the grid.
“Ideally I would liked to have been further up the grid on the inside going into the first corner because it is easy to get pushed out wide so I need to get a good start,” he said.
Beech got a good start but a coming together ahead of him had a ripple effect and pushed a number of riders onto the grass and despite avoiding the melee Ash lost time and dropped down to cross the line in 30thplace at the end of the first lap.
For the remaining 14 laps, Beech battled his way through the field to finish the race in 20thposition.
“The rear suspension was causing me problems making the bike unstable and difficult to steer into the corners but we have a break now until the next round, so a chance to work on the bike and sort these problems,” said Beech.
You can follow Beech and the team’s progress at www.jonesdorlingracing.co.uk, on Twitter @JDR_Racing or on Facebook JonesDorlingRacing