Top 30 finish for James McManus at Autodrom Most
A fall in both free practice sessions put 17-year-old James McManus on the back foot at the start of the weekend but the World Supersport 300 rookie James McManus came through with a top 30 finish in race two at the Autodrom Most in the Czech Republic at the weekend. This was on the back of 35th place in race one.
The 4.2 kilometre / 2.62 mile Most Circuit was added to the World SBK calendar this year and is situated in the northwest of the Czech Republic about an hour and 20 minutes from the capital Prague by motorway.
It was a new track for nearly the entire field of World Supersport 300 riders and things didn’t go smoothly for Team #109 rider James McManus on Friday. The first free practice session on Friday was dry. Unfortunately, just four laps into the session, McManus was taken out by another rider at turn 17. The second free practice session was wet. His misfortunes continued, when he slipped off at turn two, again with just a few laps completed.
On Saturday McManus, nursing two sore ankles, made his way out onto a dry circuit to compete in the 30-minute Superpole session. Having only completed 8 laps and only four of those in the dry McManus was lacking track time and set up data. During the nine laps, he completed in the session he recorded a best lap time of 1:51.584 which put him 42nd on the grid.
The good weather continued for the first 14-lap race of the weekend, which took place at lunchtime on Saturday. McManus made a good start quickly rising to 38th position on the first lap. By the sixth lap, he was 36th overall and he went on to battle with Niccolo Lisci and Joel Romero. The latter of those two clipping the back wheel of the former on lap seven and crashing out of the race.
McManus held off the challenge of the Italian Lisci to finish in 35th place setting his best lap time of the weekend a 1:50.558.
The number 14 made a great start to race two ending his first lap in 36th position. McManus found himself in a long battle with the Argentine Joel Romero once again as the Kawasaki Ninja 400 of Team #109 and the SMW Racing rider swapped places on various occasions.
In the end it was McManus who crossed the line in 30th position just 0.050 seconds ahead of his rival.
James McManus’ next track action will be at Donington Park 13-15 August for the Completely Motorbikes /Affinity Sports Academy team in the Hel Performance British Junior Supersport Championship where he is currently 11th overall.
James McManus said,” To be honest it was a struggle this weekend. I found it a difficult circuit to learn and obviously on Friday I missed a lot of track time. We improved as the weekend went on so there were some definite positives. I am now looking forward to racing in the UK at Donington Park in the British Junior Supersport championship and continuing my learning progress in the World Supersport championship later this season. A big thanks to Team #109 for all their help this weekend.”