MotorSport Vision press release:
Leon Camier overhauled Sylvain Guintoli in the early season chase for the ViSK British Superbike Championship in association with Pirelli as he took his first winning double in the top flight in a dramatic second round at Oulton Park.
Riding the Airwaves Yamaha, Camier, who had won last time out at Brands Hatch, maintained his rich vein of form by first taking his maiden pole start, and then dominating the two races at the Cheshire circuit, finishing ahead of Hydrex Honda rider Karl Harris in each, with Guintoli taking a pair of thirds aboard the Worx Crescent Suzuki.
The changeable conditions caused problems, with light rain at times, during the day, but the opening Superbike race began in the dry with Stuart Easton setting the pace from Harris and Camier, though the action was stopped on the second lap to speed aid to John Laverty who had crashed heavily, though fortunately without serious injury, at Hilltop.
Camier had an anxious moment ahead of the re-start, pulling off the grid momentarily to check a fluid leak, which turned out to be coolant from an overheating engine – he was able to continue without problem and again had to scrap with Easton and Harris, taking the lead on the seventh lap.
Harris, chasing maiden glory in the series chased hard, but had to settle for second best as Camier took the victory by a little over a second, reflecting: “The race was really hard at the begnning but then I settled into something of a rhythm and was able to pick ‘em off in front of me.”
Guintoli, racing the challenging circuit for the first time, rode strongly to take third ahead of Easton with James Ellison taking fifth ahead of Glen Richards.
Easton made a great start to the second race, but Harris was equal to that, taking over out front, but not for long before Camier was piling on the pressure and snatching the lead at Lodge on the third lap and then romping into the distance to take the victory by some seven seconds.
“We really didn’t expect to win one race, let alone two, but the team pulled it out of the bag for me,” said Camier who then warned his rivals to expect more of the same, starting with the next round at Donington Park: “We should have our new engines for them and they will give us an extra 15-20bhp which will help us particularly in the slower corners.”
Harris took second ahead of Guintoli who had overcome a poor start to carve through the pack from tenth on the opening lap to take third ahead of Ellison, Richards and Ian Lowry aboard the Relentless Suzuki.
Gary Mason, tenth and sixth overall, celebrated his 30th birthday with a winning double in the Mirror.co.uk Cup with Martin Jessopp twice second ahead of Pete Hickman and Tom Tunstall.
ViSK British Superbike Championship in association with Pirelli
Race 1 – 18 laps
1 L Camier Airwaves Yamaha 29m 14.802s av.sp. 99.40mph
2 K Harris Hydrex Honda +1.062s
3 S Guintoli (FR) Worx Suzuki +5.378s
4 S Easton Hydrex Honda +5.485s
5 J Ellison Airwaves Yamaha +14.763s
6 G Richards (AUS) HM Plant Honda +15.145s
7 I Lowry Relentless Suzuki +19.939s
8 J O’Halloran (AUS) SMT Honda +20.261s
9 G Mason Quay Garage Honda +25.040s
10 J Brookes (AUS) HM Plant Honda +25.494s
Race 2 – 18 laps
1 L Camier Airwaves Yamaha 29m 07.389s av.sp. 99.83mph
2 K Harris Hydrex Honda +7.326s
3 S Guintoli (FR) Worx Suzuki +11.792s
4 J Ellison Airwaves Yamaha +11.908s
5 G Richards (AUS) HM Plant Honda +12.295s
6 I Lowry Relentless Suzuki +15.447s
7 G Mason Quay Garage Honda +17.702s
8 S Andrews MSS Colchester Kawasaki +19.420s
9 C Walker Motorpoint Henderson Yamaha +19.535s
10 J O’Halloran SMT Honda +25.749s
All riders GB except where stated
1 L Camier 88
2 S Guintoli 77
3 G Richards 52
4 K Harris 50
5 J Ellison 44
6 S Easton 42
7 G Mason 33
8 J O’Halloran 26
9= C Walker 22
9=S Andrews 22
Donington Park 23-24-25 May