Tommy Aquino in action at the last round at Donington Park

Tommy Aquino in action at the last round at Donington Park

As the British Superbikes Championship moves to Silverstone this weekend for the penultimate race weekend of the season, Team WD-40 is on the verge of celebrating its first title.

Joe Francis’ dominant season-long displays in the Monster Energy British Motostar championship means he is just one podium finish away from being crowned champion.

For Team WD-40 is will cap a remarkable first year of racing during which it has claimed 13 podiums so far and excited crowds with some excellent racing from all riders.

In the Pirelli National Superstock 1000, Tommy Aquino will be fighting to claim enough points to finish third in the championship, another amazing achievement given he had never raced in the UK or on a 1,000cc bike before this season.

He will once again be joined on the grid by Jon Railton, whose injury-hit season has hampered what was a promising start.

Aquino said: “It’s been a while since the last round at Donington and I’m really looking forward to getting back on the Blue and yellow machine at Silverstone.

“I’ve got a great chance of finishing the season in style and after three podiums in the last four races I’ll be looking for a good points haul.”

Railton from Grafham, Huntingdonshire, is hoping to take the form from the recent Silverstone 200 into the race.

“I’m hoping for a good result and performance at Silverstone this weekend, particularly after my recent race there, and know the team have prepared an excellent bike for me,” said Railton

“Being part of Team WD-40 is a privilege and I couldn’t ask for a better crew to help me get back on track after my injuries.”

For Francis, the race at Silverstone could cap a memorable season, and with ten podiums from ten races this season, the championship is tantalisingly close.

The 15-year-old, from Backford near Chester, knows he is racing for the title rather than individual race honours, so his focus will be on finishing the race and gaining the vital championship points.

His second place finish in the Moto 3 class at Assen less than two weeks ago gives Francis a 36 point championship lead, with a maximum of 50 points remaining.

“The championship is so close, but just one mistake and it could be all in the balance again,” said Francis.

“Although I would like to go for the race win, what’s important now is the championship and that means riding my own race and not worrying about what my rivals are doing, just concentrating on me.

“Sometimes that’s harder than racing at the front, but I’ve had plenty of action there this season and the reward is my 36 point lead, now I just have to keep it!”

Brent Gladwin, Team WD-40’s manager, said: “It’s been a superb season for everyone associated with Team WD-40 and this weekend at Silverstone could be the first reward for all the hard work.

“Although Joe is riding the bike, it’s all about teamwork to get him a machine that is competitive and a plan for each lap of every race.

“The championship is now in his hands and we’ll be keeping everything crossed that we can celebrate as a team.

“Tommy could also finish the season with a championship trophy as he is in a great position to battle for third place in the title race.

“His recent win at Cadwell Park meant we’re the first team in quite a while to win two separate championship races in one round.

“Jon had a good start to the season, but a couple of nasty falls have led to injuries which have hampered his progress. In the last two meetings of the season we want Jon to get back to the early season form.”

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