Denby Dale racer Tom Tunstall endured a tough outing at seventh round of the British Superbikes Championship at Oulton Park.
The 34-year-old travelled to Cheshire on the back of points return at Thruxton in the previous round, but struggled with bike set-up issues and a poor start left him with a frustrating race battle.
The Doodson Motorsport racer headed to Oulton Park positive that a revised bike set-up would enable him to fight for more championship points, however the new configuration didn’t give the feedback expected and meant extra work was required to help muscle the 1000cc Kawasaki around the 2.7mile parkland track.
With severe weather forecast for Sunday’s planned race day, the series organisers took a pro-active plan and moved the Superstock races to Saturday evening with Tom’s grid position of 24th reflecting the answer had yet to be found.
The revised schedule meant the team lost the valuable warm-up session but still made changes to bike geometry and balance for the fourteen lap race, held in dry and warm conditions.
A bad start saw Tunstall end the opening lap in 29th and despite working his way to 23rd by the chequered flag Tunstall was left frustrated, and after the race explained:
“The start wasn’t great, the rider in front of me lurched into my path and it screwed my race really,” said Tunstall.
“The changes to the bike felt to be an improvement which was good but in the race I was in a group that was really holding me up, just braking late, tripping up over each other and racing defensively.
“My lap times were between 0.7 and 1.4 seconds a lap slower than I was doing consistently in qualifying. I could understand it if we were fighting for the win or a podium but back there was just wasting time”.
“It’s the nature of this class when you get deep in the pack. Had qualifying or the start gone better it’d be quite a different story. There’s no point in kicking myself about it now I’ll just channel it positively into learning from it and working even harder for the next race”
The next race of the 2014 series is staged at Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire over the Bank Holiday weekend of August 23–25.