Clarke clipped as race ends early

Aaron Clarke pictured at Thruxton. Photo: Dave Yeomans.
Aaron Clarke pictured at Thruxton. Photo: Dave Yeomans.

It turned out to be a difficult weekend for draperRACING riders Aaron Clarke and Tommy Philp - as neither rider was able to bring points back to the team from Thruxton.

Kirton’s Clarke was struggling with the hot weather and lack of grip with his tyres.

He began the Superstock 600 race from the eighth row and got away to a fantastic start.

But as he went into turn three a rider ahead fell, taking another rider with him who, in turn, clipped Aaron and also took him down, an unfortunate early end to a race that held promise for the Lincolnshire rider.

He said: “I got a mega start and was heading towards a strong points finish but it was all over at turn three when I was taken down.

“I have hurt my ankle again and have a few bruises but otherwise I am ok.

“The bike has suffered only cosmetic damage which is a relief.

“I am so annoyed as once again it was not my fault.

“But that’s racing and we have to take the rough with the smooth.”

Philp was riding in the sixth round of the British Supersport championship but couldn’t quite find a good set up for the tricky conditions on the fast and bumpy Hampshire circuit.

He qualified the Yamaha for a seventh-row start to the short sprint race on Saturday, but the hot weather conditions coupled with the difficult track surface made short work of the tyres and he completed the race in 21st position.

He started Sunday’s feature race from the ninth row, near to the back of the grid.

But he got his head down and, once his tyres had some warmth in them, he began to reel in the riders ahead.

He was riding well and circulating at the same pace as the leaders.

The 21-year-old, from East Kirkby, was running at a consistent lap time of 1m 19s, and while his pace remained the same throughout the race, the riders ahead began to drop into the 1.20/1.21s.

In the final four laps, Philp was circulating faster than the top five riders and made up three seconds to the riders ahead completing the race in 21st place.

In a twist of fate two riders who finished ahead were disqualified after a post-race check on their bikes, so Philp was elevated to 19th place.

The next round is at Brands Hatch from August 5-7.