|John McGuinness at the Metzeler |
National 1000cc Superstock
Picture: Glynne Lewis
The Padgetts Honda rider fought his way through from a sluggish start to pick up three more Championship points, although the result did drop him back to 9th place overall in the Championship table.
A solid start to the weekend saw John take 11th place in Saturday's free practice sessions and a few improvements to the bike enabled him to improve by almost a second in the afternoon's opening qualifying session, despite it being affected by the rain, to move up to tenth overall.
Sunday saw more inclement weather and although it was dry for the second and final qualifying session, strong winds meant it was very difficult for riders to improve their times. John was one of those who couldn't improve and his time from Saturday remained meaning that he lined up in 13th place on the grid.
Conditions were dry for Sunday's 14-lap race but a languid start saw John down in 17th place at the completion of the first lap and with a lot of work to do just to get in to the points. He was up to 16th on lap 2 and then moved up to 15th and in to the points on the sixth lap having overhauled former champion Lee Jackson.
The next two laps saw him climb up to 13th as first he overtook Sam Warren and then Luke Quigley crashed out. He promptly pulled away from the group he was dicing with and by lap 12 was almost four seconds clear. However, he was also five seconds adrift of 12th placed Steve Plater and he had to settle for a somewhat lonely 13th place at the chequered flag.
"It was another tough race and I left myself an awful lot to do after firstly a so-so qualifying performance and then a distinctly average start," a frustrated John said after the race.
"I managed to battle my way by a few of the boys but the front group had already gone by then and it's quite disheartening when you see them away in the distance and know you can't get any higher up.
I haven't been 100 per cent happy with the handling of the bike these last few rounds and the set-up I've been running is something that hasn't quite worked for me," he added. "I was following what my team-mates Glen and Hutchy have been running but I haven't been able to replicate the times I set 12 months ago so we're going to go back to the fork set-up we had a year ago for the next round. I won at Croft 12 months ago and I'm just going to set up the bike exactly like that for practice and qualifying and get back to the feeling I'm comfortable with.
"The team have been doing a mega job again this weekend and I just want to repay their faith and hard work with a good result."