Barnsley’s Wilson Racing end season with three podium finishes

Championship winner Max Cook. Photo: Hairy Beast Pix.
Championship winner Max Cook. Photo: Hairy Beast Pix.

Barnsley’s Wilson Racing Moto3 team were in action at the final round of the Hel Performance Motostar British standard class Championship last weekend.

On he 2.4 mile GP track at Brands Hatch Max Cook took a third and a race victory. Charlie Atkins finished fourth in race one and joined his team-mate on the podium finishing third in race two. Jake Clark ended his rookie season with a tenth and an eighth.

There were two free practice sessions on the Friday. Max Cook, who has already been crowned 2017 Champion, headed both of them. Charlie Atkins finished the day with the third quickest lap time and Jake Clark was ninth.

On the Saturday morning the youngsters were out on the track for the 25 minute qualifying session. Max Cook managed to cut a huge six tenths of a second off his best time on his last flying lap to take pole position. Charlie Atkins qualified in a solid fourth place and Jake Clark qualified 11th in the class.

The 10 lap race was staged on the Saturday afternoon in good conditions. However, Max Cook suffered drama on the starting grid as he accidentally flicked the kill switch. He was quickly moved into pit lane where the bike was restarted. Whilst the other riders launched from the starting grid he had to wait for them all to pass to be released from pit lane and last. He finished the first lap 7.6 seconds behind the race leader. However, he went on to incredibly claw his way back to third at the finish line. Charlie Atkins made a good start but found himself stuck behind one of the slower GP class riders. Unable to match the speed of the GP bike in a straight line he kept catching it again in the corners. This enabled the two riders in front to pull a gap of Atkins. Despite this Atkins finished fourth. Jake Clark was embroiled in a battle with another standard class rider for the duration of the ten laps crossing the line in 10th at the end of the race.

On Sunday afternoon the Wilson Racing team competed in the 12 lap feature race. With the grid based on the Saturday fastest laps Cook and Atkins lined up one and two in the standard class. Cook made a great start and whilst Atkins got away well he was again stuck behind the same rider from the GP class. He managed to overtake around the halfway stage and put in a fine performance to finish the race in third place. Jake Clark was caught up in a race long battle again with the same rider from race one. This time however, Clark got the better of his adversary and finished the race in eighth position.

Gary Wilson said “Two more great races! Max is already Champion this year so when he clipped the kill switch with his glove on the starting grid in race one it didn’t matter too much. He did fantastically well to come through the field and reach the podium. Race two he made no mistake and took the win. Charlie has really come on at this track and fully deserved his podium in race two. Jake Clark improved all weekend and it was great to see him finish both races. It’s been a long season but ultimately a very successful one. As team owners Nikita and I are also very proud that two of our riders made the 22 for the British Talent Cup and the other is on the reserve list for the 2018 season. Now we’ll have a couple of weeks off before we start to organise the sponsorship and funding and get everything in place for the next season.”