Smiths Triumph continued their assault on the 2014 Motorpoint British Supersport Championship at Assen in Holland over the weekend and whilst Saturday's race didn't quite go to plan, Sunday's most certainly did with Billy McConnell and Graeme Gowland giving them their fifth 1-2 result of the season
The weekend started well for the team when Gowland set pole position for Saturday's 'Sprint' race, comfortably inside the lap record and with McConnell in fourth, hopes were high. However, rain prior to the race made conditions extremely difficult and it all went wrong for Gowland two thirds of the way round the opening lap when he crashed out on the factory-backed Triumph Daytona 675R, fortunately without injury. McConnell, meanwhile, fared little better and struggled home in 11th place although he was later promoted to tenth when local Dutch rider Chris Nobel was excluded for a technical infringement.
It left Gowland and McConnell in seventh and 12th respectively on the grid for Sunday's 'Feature' race, which turned out to be a scintillating affair as the two team-mates, along with a host of other riders fought tooth and nail for the win. Positions changed all the time but as the race neared its conclusion, the duo looked like they'd done enough to finish on the podium with the only doubt still being who would win. Gowland grabbed the lead going into the chicane with a late-braking attempt which didn't quite work out allowing McConnell to take full advantage and to take his fifth win of the season whilst Gowland came home a close second.
This now means McConnell extends his lead to 12 points at the head of the championship standings with Gowland in second. Gowland is now a further 55 points behind with two meetings to go.
Sunday’s ‘Feature’ race also saw three other Triumph Daytona 675R riders battling for the points with Triumph racing teams locking out the top five spots after the 12 lap distance. Behind the Smiths Triumph duo Mossey and Stapleford (Profile Racing) edged ahead of Jones (T3 Racing) to take third, fourth and fifth respectively.
The next British Superbike round is at Silverstone – 05th October 2014 where the National Superstock 600 and TriStar R&G Triple Challenge will be back in action.