BSB: From 21st to 4th: Jack Kennedy’s Sensational Performance at Donington Park for Mar-Train Yamaha.

Published on October 2, 2023
By Dawn Hammersley

From 21st to 4th: Jack Kennedy’s Sensational Performance at Donington Park for Mar-Train Yamaha

Kennedy surged to a stunning fourth-place finish after starting from 21st on the grid in Saturday’s Sprint race, being denied a podium by just one thousandth of a second.

He backed that up with 11th and fifth place finishes in Sunday’s races to end the weekend with a total haul of 39 points.

It was a fantastic return from the Mar-Train team after Kennedy had missed out on Qualifying Two on Saturday.

Kennedy said:
“Saturday was amazing. Going from 21st to fourth in the first lap was brilliant. Nobody thought I would finish fourth after starting in 21st, so we have to be happy with that.

“But to narrowly miss out on a podium was torture. It was very hard to take but I have to be happy with how the bike and I felt in those conditions.

The last lap was crazy. Luke Mossey ran the both of us wide coming out of Coppice, and then again at Melbourne which meant I couldn’t get the cutback.

“It was a drag race up the hill and his BMW just had the edge over the Yamaha. He ran me wide at the last corner as well and there was nothing I could do.

“Race Two in the dry was tough because it was spitting with rain throughout. Then it came on heavy and it was difficult to know how hard to push.

“There was much more rain and standing water for Race Three, so I didn’t have as good a feeling initially with the bike, so I had to let it come to me. I struggled a lot with vision and the visor was getting dirty.

“I couldn’t see properly at all during the middle part of the race. I wiped it with my glove which improved it a lot and I started pushing again and made a couple of places.

“We could have made another place or two, but the race was stopped after Leon Haslam’s engine went. But it was a good weekend overall.

“I am really happy with the way the weekend went, and we look forward to Brands Hatch now and the final round of the season. Hopefully I can stick it on the podium.”

Mar-Train Yamaha Racing team owner Tim Martin added:
“Overall it was a very positive weekend after a difficult start. We didn’t get into Q2 for the first time this year which was frustrating.

“We started in 21st position for Saturday’s Sprint race and the conditions were very bad. But we had a good bike setting and picked the right tyres.

“We got up to second for a while, but we were mostly in third position until the final lap, and we got pipped on the line by one thousandth of a second. We were delighted with the fourth-place finish, but also gutted not to get our first-ever Superbike podium.

“We started Sunday’s opening race on the second row, but our dry pace wasn’t as strong, as we expected. But we came home in 11th place.

“The rain came back on for the third race where we started in P12. Jack came all the way through, and we finished fifth.

“Again, the wet pace was good, and Jack could maybe have even got fourth if the race had gone full distance. But Leon Haslam’s engine blow saw the red flags come out which was the right call.

“All in all, it is one of our best weekends of the season. We were definitely much improved from the last round at Oulton, and it is probably our best round since the opening weekend at Silverstone.

“So, it is good to come back to where we know we can be and seeing that improvement. We roll onto the final round at Brands Hatch, and we will try and get another good weekend.

“If we can get inside that top six again, I will be over the moon.”

Featured Images: Olithephoto


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