Eugene signs off with a podium at Brands Hatch
The final round at Brands Hatch saw Eugene bounce back from a DNF on Saturday. Eugene fought hard to end his British Supersport season on a high with a superb podium in the final race of the season.
The first free practice on Friday was wet. Several riders did not venture onto the Kent circuit. Eugene McManus spun a few laps to get a feel for the conditions. The second free practice session was cloudy and the track was drying. Eugene finished 7th quickest in the British Supersport Championship
Eugene had done enough in free practice on Friday to go straight into Q2. The lap times were very close. He was just over a second off the fastest rider in the class but this put him down in 14th on the grid.
Sprint Race (10-laps)
Despite earlier showers and dark clouds overhead, there was a dry line visible around the circuit and the race was declared a dry race. However, off the racing line, there were still some damp patches.
Eugene made his customary good start to races gaining three spots on the opening lap and moving up into 11th position. He later slipped back to 12th. On lap seven of ten of the race he lost the front going into Druids and he slid off in the tricky conditions.
Feature Race (16-laps)
With grid positions set on the fastest laps from the Sprint Race and failing to finish in the Sprint Race, Eugene lined up 16th on the grid.
Although sunny and dry the temperature was low and this may have had an impact on a number of riders that would fall during the race.
Eugene McManus made up four places on the opening lap cutting through to 12th position. Further progress was halted when the safety car came onto the circuit following an early crash at Graham Hill Bend. The Safety car pulled in at the end of the third lap and Eugene McManus was soon into 9th position and in a group of riders contesting fifth place at the time.
By lap eight Eugene was leading the group of riders. The number 15 continued to press on. With a few riders making mistakes later on in the race, Eugene took full advantage to secure his first podium of the year.
Eugene said, "It's been a tough year and it's great to finish on the podium, especially and Brands Hatch. It holds a special place in my heart as I nearly ended my career here. I'm glad to come back and stand on the podium. I'm very happy but it couldn't be done without a great team, great sponsors and all my family."