Laverty hoping for minor miracle to win British Superbike Championship

LOUTH rider Michael Laverty is hoping things will fall his way as he bids to win the British Superbike Championship this weekend.

Laverty, riding for Louth-based Samsung Honda, will be racing at Brands Hatch this weekend for the final round of the British Superbike Championship with the triple-header event at the Kent circuit.

Laverty arrives at the final round in fifth position in the overall standings. He trails championship leader Shane Byrne by 49 points but with 75 points available still has a mathematical chance at a maiden title.

Team-mate Jon Kirkham celebrated success at the opening round of the season on the Indy configuration of the Brands Hatch circuit and has high hopes for the final round of the season.

In the National Superstock 1000 Championship Jason O’Halloran saw the title slip from his grasp at the previous round at Silverstone with a clutch lever issue but intends on returning to the top step of the podium this weekend to finish the season on a high, whilst Gary Johnson is also aiming to build on his recent performances and aim for a sharp-end finish.

Laverty said: “I think Brands Hatch can be different from Assen and Silverstone. When we raced there last, we had been playing with the settings, so I know we can be stronger than we were then and it would be nice for us to end the season on a high.

“I am hoping that the issues we had at recent rounds won’t return and we have been working on a backup plan to get the harder tyre to work in the colder conditions. I am looking at the championship as we know mathematically we can still have a chance as you don’t know what will happen, so we just have to concentrate on winning races.

“I am up for a bit of fairing rubbing; I am sure Brands Hatch will be one of the best races of the season.”

Jon Kirkham added: “I am looking forward to this weekend but at the same time I don’t want the season to be over! I pulled a second place out last year at this round and finished on a high so I’m going to push hard for a similar high this year.

“We are going to work hard with a race setup from first free practice and see what we can do in these last races of the season.”

Havier Beltran, Team Manager, said: “It is the final round of the season and the Samsung Honda team are aiming to end the year with some strong results in both the Superbike and Superstock classes. This is a crucial round of the season in BSB and like we have seen before anything can still happen so we just need to be aiming for the best results we can possibly achieve.

“After the disappointment of missing out on the Superstock 1000 title at Silverstone, Jason will definitely be looking to end the season with another race win and Gary is sure to be putting it out there as well.”