Big Eds Blog - The Showdown Commences!
I'm an enthusiastic guy, my big personality goes hand in hand with the size of my helmet, however I'm going to say this as a statement of absolute fact - this has been the most riveting MCE British Superbike Championship that I've ever been part of.
The best bit? We've only just hit the showdown, this is when the top six riders bunch back together and it all comes down to only seven more races for the Championship to be decided!
Leon Haslam, Shane Byrne, Jason O'Halloran, James Ellison, Dan Linfoot and Luke Mossey will all battle it out for the Championship, and in my honest opinion I think with only 40 points separating 1st from 6th we can expect even more surprises.
Haslam and Byrne will walk into the final three rounds as favourites which is hardly surprising due to their impressive form in 2016 so far - however their year hasn't been perfect, Haslam has had a few uninspiring rounds - for instance Thruxton where he finished in a disappointing 13th and 5th in the two races. Byrnes year has not been without struggle, too - at the last round he was unable to finish on the podium, whereas Haslam bagged three wins and in the process the Championship lead.
Jason O'Halloran has demonstrated fantastic consistency and comfort on the aging Fireblade - he is considered by a few as a dark horse for the overall Championship and I can't wait to see what he can do.
I was happy to see a return to form from James Ellison at the last round, he demonstrated aggression and a determination to push the JG Speedfit Kawasaki to the limit, and in the process gain a showdown spot.
Dan Linfoot crashed out of the last race at Oulton Park, however had done just enough to secure his showdown spot and join his Honda teammate. He is still on the hunt for the elusive MCE BSB victory, however, much like O'Halloran he seems to have gelled with the Fireblade recently and I can't wait to see what he has in store for us.
Last, but by no means least is Luke Mossey. What a weekend it was for Mossey, not only did he bag himself a showdown spot, but he also became a first-time-father! In his own words it was a dream weekend for the rider and I'm really happy to see him make the cut. I expect big things from him in the next few years and I think this is a massive step in the right direction.
It's funny, I read a blog I wrote back in December last year and a few of my predictions came true - for instance Shane Byrne's Ducati went from strength to strength throughout the year, and others didn't - such as I wrote it before Leon Haslam announced his return, and he's certainly made himself known in the paddock, to say the least!
I also pondered if I had a tenner who I would put it on. I said I didn't know and the funny thing is I still don't. Sure, I've got a sneaking suspicion but I won't jinx it by telling you lot - where's the fun in that!
16.09.2016 - Big Ed