Inaugural Masters Superbike Championship ‘Young Racer of the Year’ award winner Robert English, takes the first steps in the next stage of his career this coming weekend (March 31st – April 2nd) at Round 1 of the British Superstock 1000 Championship at Donington Park.
Having come out on top of a six rider shoot-out at Mondello Park last October Robert will tackle six British Superbike Championship supporting events during 2017, backed by a €16,000 prize package, courtesy of the award sponsors, Mondello Park, Dawn International, AJ Plumbing Supplies, Pat Duke Plant Services and Megabikes.
English was the first rider in Masters history to win the Supersport Championship and Superbike Championship in successive years and this year will compete on the same IFS Yamaha Superstock bike which he rode to so many race wins, and his second Masters title last season. The Bangor Co. Down native will compete in an extensive programme of events at home and abroad during 2017 but his award funding will be used to finance his British Championship races.
This weekend’s opening event at Donington will be The Young Racer of the Years’ first race at Donington for six years and only his third time to visit the track. The British Superbike Championship pre-Season test took place at the Leicestershire circuit last week but due to persistent heavy rain English had little opportunity to improve his circuit knowledge. This weekend will therefore be a steep learning curve as the championship débutante gets used to the increased level of competition compared to the Masters Superbike Championship he cut his teeth in.
Speaking about his expectations for the weekend English said “I am excited and motivated for the coming season, It will be a tough opening round as there will be full grids of guys that have vastly more experience than me in the Superstock 1000 class. I will not let this effect my own performance as I am there to learn and to improve my overall riding ability. We have been getting ready for this all winter and it is great to finally be getting organised for the first round of the year. I would like to say a big thanks to all of the people supporting the award as well as my own loyal sponsors because without them this season would not be possible.”
Following Donington, over the remainder of the season, the Young Racer of the Year backing will take Robert English to Brands Hatch on two occasions, Oulton Park and Knockhill before finishing his schedule at Silverstone in September.
For further information on the Masters Superbike Young Rider of the Year award scheme which continues into 2017 see www.masterssuperbike.ie. Robert’s progress can also be followed on the Masters Superbike Championship facebook page.