SGR face tricky start in first two fixtures

Xavier Zayat in action. Photo by Adrian Smith.
Xavier Zayat in action. Photo by Adrian Smith.
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THE Morpeth-based SGR Racing team had to deal with tricky conditions at the first two rounds of the Monster Motostar British 125 GP Championship.

The first round at the Kent circuit of Brands Hatch over the Easter weekend was set to be 13-year-old American Xavier Zayat’s first competitive outing on SGR’s Honda 125GP bike. He started off by learning the undulating circuit and working on finding a good setup with the help of Kais Ohlins suspension specialists. This resulted in Xavier going seventh quickest in Qualifying Two before the rain started to fall.

This heralded the setting for race day – wet. But Xavier showed good pace in the morning warm-up and was running in the top 10, gaining valuable experience running on wet Dunlops ahead of the race.

Unfortunately, the chance of a great result in the race was denied for Xavier and the team due to track contamination during the Supersport Race, which led to the cancellation of the rest of the meeting for solo riders.

SGR Racing then moved onto the second round at the fastest circuit of the season, Thruxton. Rain yet again hampered preparations and Xavier struggled to get a comfortable suspension setting for the fast and very bumpy circuit.

The delayed race from Brands Hatch was run on the Saturday after qualifying, where Xavier started from 16th on the grid.

He rode an admirable race – finally finishing in 15th position to gain his first points in a British Championship.

Suspension changes were again made overnight to give Xavier more confidence in the fast-sweeping corners, which the team hoped to try in morning warm up. However, SGR was struck by a technical problem just after Xavier left the pit lane, therefore the team just had to go with new suspension settings for the race.

Xavier got an excellent start and was running in the top 15 before the race was red flagged. This resulted in a two-part race with the second part being a five-lap sprint.

Once again he made a good start, but he was still struggling to find a good feel around the fast corners and brought the bike back in 19th position.

SGR and Xavier are looking forward to trying to get back into the top end of the field at the next round at Oulton Park over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend.

For more information about the team, visit www.sgrracing.co.uk