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Jun 16, 2014 - 07:03 AM
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Gowland Doubles Up At Snetterton
Posted by: newsla on Jun 16, 2014 - 06:57 AM
Sports Cars
Gowland Doubles Up At Snetterton


The Smiths Triumph Racing Team had another weekend to remember at the third round of the 2014 Motorpoint British Supersport Championship at Snetterton with 28-year-old Graeme Gowland taking a resounding double victory in the two races and Aussie team-mate Billy McConnell also on the podium with a second and a third place.

 

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The weekend got underway with Saturday's 10-lap Sprint race and 27-year-old McConnell, who had claimed pole position in qualifying, grabbed the lead on the second lap, opening up a small lead by mid-race distance. However, Gowland and main championship rival Alastair Seeley closed the deficit in the second half of the race and going into the final lap there was nothing between the trio. Positions changed hands frequently but it was Northumberland rider Gowland who took the win aboard the factory-supported Triumph Daytona 675R with Seeley relegating Adelaide's McConnell to third on the run in to the line.

Today's 15-lap Feature race was a lot simpler affair for Gowland, from Allendale, as he grabbed the lead the moment the lights turned green and he never looked back. With a lead of over a second at the end of the first lap, he continually stretched it on each lap and once it reached four seconds, he was able to ease off in the closing stages and complete a superb double which was the first of his career.

McConnell had to work a lot harder for his second place, battling throughout with a number of other riders but he eventually secured the runner-up spot to give the team their first one-two of the season. With Seeley crashing out on the warm-up lap, the results also mean that McConnell maintains his championship lead with Gowland now having moved up to second.

It was Triumph's first Supersport win at Snetterton and also means that four Motorpoint British Supersport Championship race wins have been secured with Gowland's Snetterton double following McConnell's similar feat at Oulton Park the previous round. Add to that their inaugural TT win with Gary Johnson earlier this month and it's been a brilliant couple of months for the Gloucester-based team.

Graeme Gowland: "Race wins have been a long time coming and it was 2010 when I last won a Supersport race so it's brilliant to be back on the top step again, even more so taking the double. Both races were hard for different reasons, Saturday's for the hot pace we were setting and Sunday's for the amount of concentration it required. It was hard work getting by Billy on Saturday, as both he and Alastair are flying at the moment, but I just kept chipping away and got the job done. Sunday's race was perfect though, getting the lead at the start and then steadily increasing my lead. It's not easy leading on your own for that length of time so I just focused on hitting all my braking markers and apexes. I'm over the moon with the double and the Smiths Triumph Team has put a lot of trust in me this year, right from the beginning of the year when they took us to Australia, so it's brilliant to repay them."

Billy McConnell: "Graeme's been on fire this weekend but I'm pleased for him and need to ask him what he had for his breakfast so I can have the same next time out! That's four wins on the bounce now for the team and shows what a fantastic package the Smiths Triumph is. The team have worked incredibly hard to put us in this position and although I'd have loved to have taken another win, I got the next best thing. I could have pushed a bit more in Saturday's race but I'd rather have a podium than go down although I made a couple of mistakes in the final two laps and that allowed the two boys to get right on my back wheel. I'm happy with the results though and full credit to the guys."

Rebecca Smith: "I'm quite lost for words at the moment! It's been fantastic for Graeme to take his first win of the season and to go on to the double is simply superb. He's injury free, feels really comfortable with the bike and Snetterton is one of his favourite circuits and he was faultless all weekend. We knew both he and Billy would be on the pace this weekend but it's been a long time since they've raced as we've obviously been contesting the North West 200 and TT so full credit to them for being in the groove straightaway. The whole team's worked really hard all weekend and it's nice to be talking about race wins at the moment. Everything's falling into place for us at present and we're on a bit of a winning streak so long may it continue!"

Motorpoint British Supersport Championship Race One (10 laps)
1 Graeme Gowland (Smiths Triumph)
2 Alastair Seeley (Yamaha)
3 Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph)
4 Luke Jones (Triumph)
5 Glenn Irwin (Kawasaki)
6 Luke Mossey (Triumph)

Motorpoint British Supersport Championship Race Two (15 laps)
1 Graeme Gowland (Smiths Triumph)
2 Billy McConnell (Smiths Triumph)
3 Luke Mossey (Triumph)
4 Luke Stapleford (Triumph)
5 Taylor Mackenzie (SuzukI)
6 Glenn Irwin (Kawasaki)

Championship standings (after three rounds)
1 McConnell 112pts
2 Gowland 86
3 Irwin 84
4 Seeley 81
5 Stapleford 70
6 Jones 65

The next round of the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship takes place at Knockhill over the weekend of June 27/29th.

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