Podium delight for Xavi Forés at Donington Park
Xavi Forés and the Honda team are celebrating this evening, as Forés became the seventh different podium finisher of the 2019 Bennetts British Superbike Championship season, as he claimed third place in the opening race at Donington Park, aboard the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2.
Taking his first-ever podium in the British series, Forés has made progress throughout the weekend, which is the first triple-header event of the year. Qualifying earlier in the day was super-close at Donington’s National Circuit and just 0.468 seconds separated the top-nine in Q2.
Starting Race 1 from 11th on the grid the Spaniard had a good start off the line and by the end of the first lap had made his way to sixth place. Getting stuck in over the remaining 25 laps, Forés carved his way through the pack and set about chasing down the podium. In the closing stages he had made his way into third position and looked to be chasing down the next podium spot, crossing the line third he was only 0.842 seconds away from second. Forés will start tomorrow’s Race 2 from the front row of the grid in second place.
Teammate Andrew Irwin has been making progress throughout all sessions at the 1.9-mile circuit. Missing out on the final stage of qualifying, Irwin started Race 1 from 13th on the grid. With a strong start off the line he was seventh behind Forés after the first lap. Contact with another rider put the Irishman back into ninth and he started to make his charge back. On the 15th lap he was given a time penalty (+1.95s), after having a moment on-track, which caused him to cut the corner at turn 9/10. He crossed the line just outside the top-ten in 11th place and will start tomorrow’s opening race from ninth on the grid.
Meanwhile the teams’ National Superstock 1000 Championship rider Tom Neave scored two sixth-place finishes in today’s 88-mile, two-part race. Starting from 12th place, Neave made huge progress and crossed the line sixth. The second instalment saw him get a bad start off the line and he dropped back into tenth. Digging deep and working his way back through the pack, he finished sixth, just +0.332 seconds shy from fifth place.
Donington Park National Circuit Statistics
1.98 miles (3.186km)
Righthand : 6
Pole Position: Left
Lap Record : 1:06.432