Team Suzuki Press Office – June 16.
Bradley Ray – BSB – 1st
Richard Cooper – BSB – 13th
Billy McConnell – SST – 1st
Buildbase Suzuki celebrated two pole positions in today’s qualifying sessions at Snetterton for round four of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship, with Bradley Ray set to start tomorrow’s opening Superbike race from the head of the grid, while Billy McConnell also set the fastest qualifying time on his GSX-R1000 in the Superstock 1000 class.
It had been a case of working through the weekend’s free practice sessions and getting back up to speed after the championship’s break. Ray comfortably progressed from Q1 and Q2, setting the second quickest time in each session before topping the sheets when it mattered in Q3. His teammate, Richard Cooper, will start tomorrow’s opening superbike race from the fifth row of the grid, in 13th place.
McConnell was nearly half a second quicker than his nearest rival in qualifying, as he looks to build on his championship lead this weekend.
“We’re feeling good. It’s nice to get pole obviously, and good for the team with Billy on pole in Superstock. Today we went back to our settings from the test here. At the start of the weekend we tried the Yoshimura swingarm, but we didn’t have enough time to get a good setup with it, so we went back to the standard one and immediately the good feeling was back and we could do the lap times again. We then worked a bit on the front end, engine braking, the usual stuff you work on in a race weekend, and I’m feeling good. We know we can run a good pace in tomorrow’s races, so we’ll see how we go.”
“It’s been a good day for the team with Brad and Billy on pole. Team morale is high and everyone’s feeling good. I’m frustrated personally to be 13th, because we’ve been top-10 throughout practice and working in a good direction, and we’ve got a good a pace, just not quite good enough at the moment. But clearly the bike can work we’ve just got to fine tune my GSX-R and we’ll be right. We’re going to try some new bits in warm-up and see how it feels. But it’s so tight out there, as it always is in BSB; just a tenth quicker and I’d have been eighth and the third row instead of the fifth. I’ll get my head down tomorrow and we’ll make a go of it.”
“I’ve pretty much done a whole box of cold and flu tablets and Lemsip this weekend. I felt really bad on Friday. Started to feel more human today. But it’s going good. We had a run out at Cadwell earlier in the week and changed some things for this weekend, but to be honest what we changed didn’t really work here from FP1, so we changed our suspension setup a bit, especially on the front, made some gearing changes, and managed to grab pole. It was a bit busy out there and I think pole changed like four or five times toward the end of the session, but we managed to make up a big chunk in the last sector and get the top spot. We’ve got more to try in warm up tomorrow, especially gearing, but last time myself and Brad both took pole we both did the double, so fingers crossed history repeats itself.”
Superbike qualifying result: 1. Bradley Ray (Buildbase Suzuki GSX-R1000), 2. Josh Brookes, 3. Glenn Irwin, 13. Richard Cooper (Buildbase Suzuki GSX-R1000).
Superstock 1000 qualifying result: 1. Billy McConnell (Buildbase Suzuki GSX-R1000), 2. Joe Collier, 3. Andy Reid.
Snetterton BSB Image Gallery: CLICK HERE FOR PHOTOS