Laverty at Knockhill earlier this season

Laverty at Knockhill earlier this season

The Samsung Honda team are gearing up for the ninth round of the British Superbike Championship at Donington Park this weekend as Michael Laverty and Jon Kirkham return to the Leicestershire circuit.

Laverty has his position secured as a Title Fighter in the Showdown but with six valuable podium credits available this weekend he is aiming to add to his winning tally to be in the best possible position for the final three-round title decider. Kirkham is aiming high at his home track and is determined to return to the podium again for the Samsung Honda team.

In the Superstock 1000 Championship, Jason O’Halloran is aiming for a repeat performance of his win earlier in the season at the Leicestershire circuit; he lies second in the standings, 10 points adrift of the standings leader. Gary Johnson returns with the team this weekend and is confident that he can build on his previous experience.

Michael Laverty: “It was definitely a boost being back on the podium again at Cadwell Park, I still wanted more but two third places were good for podium credit tally. The Samsung Honda works well at the fast, flowing circuits and that is what we have coming up now. We still want to be on the podium for those last credits before the Showdown but now we have our place confirmed that is slightly less pressure for me at this event; then of course it changes again for Assen. I think we can enjoy this weekend and have a good fight for the podium; I am sure there will be some scrapping for those trying to make the final places, but we just want to have a good weekend and try and get the Samsung Honda back on the podium.”

Jon Kirkham: “It’s great to be back at Donington Park as it is my home round, especially after qualifying third at Cadwell Park and being back up the sharp end. I will be out this weekend doing the best job I can and my confidence has grown again after the last round so we will be aiming to roll out on Friday, see if the improvements we made at Cadwell Park can translate to Donington and then ride as hard as we can for qualifying and the races. I would like to take some good points off the other riders this weekend; we can’t make the Showdown now but we still want to get the Samsung Honda back on the podium again before the end of the season.”

Jason O’Halloran: “We had a good race there back at the WSB event so we are quite confident that we can pick up with the setup we had there and try and get some points back this weekend. There are only three races left of the season and we don’t want to do anything silly to jeopardise our position so we are going to go out and enjoy it. We want to be back on the podium again for Samsung Honda.”

Gary Johnson: “We are looking to have a strong end to the season and we know we start on the back foot this weekend as we missed the test when we were testing with the World Endurance team in Germany. Donington should be a good track for the Fireblade and hopefully we can pull something out of the bag and end the season on a bit of a high.”

Havier Beltran, Team Manager: “As we move into the final round before the Showdown Michael will be aiming for those last podium credits and those will be paramount to being in the best position before the Showdown starts at Assen. JK obviously wants to have a strong final round to the season especially here at his home round, whilst in the Superstock class Jason is aiming to close the gap in the standings. It is also good to have Gary back this weekend and together we are looking for a strong finish to the season.”

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