Luke Hopkins from Sittingbourne, failed to finish the Donington Park round of the Pirelli National Superstock 600 championship after falling on lap eight whilst battling for fourth place.
The free practice session was difficult with the air still damp after a lot of rain. Hopkins lacked confidence in his Yamaha R6 on the cool track surface but still set the 13th best time putting him in the top half.
The Superstock 600 riders had to wait until the end of the day before they saw any track action. The weather had changed significantly and although it was blustery there were bright blue skies. The team had made some set up changes to the bike overnight. Hopkins immediately felt more comfortable and set an impressive lap time of 1:36.992. That put him 8th on the grid for the race.
Although it was his best qualifying session of the season Hopkins felt they could make some further improvement especially with rear grip.
After some radical changes to the bike set-up Hopkins was ready for the Superstock 600 race. He made an excellent get away from the line. Moving through the field Hopkins got himself into fifth position.
On lap eight he was challenging for fourth place and got on the inside of another rider. Unfortunately, the rider closed the door and Hopkins lost the front end and crashed out.
Luke Hopkins said,” It was a blow to crash out but I’m actually really positive. I now know I’ve got the pace and ability to be challenging towards the front of these races. Thanks to my Sponsors and of course my Dad for setting up the bike just right.”
Both photos: Kiel Bull