Gary Mason will head to Cadwell Park with a realistic chance of qualifying for the championship showdown after a successful weekend at Brands Hatch.
The MSS Colchester Kawasaki rider made the correct tyre choice on Saturday to finish third, his second podium of the year, but an accident in Sunday's opening race threw away a possible top ten result. Race three of the weekend saw a strong response as the Lichfield man claimed seventh.
Mason trails sixth placed Ryuichi Kiyonari by 20 points ahead of another triple-header at Cadwell Park, including the rescheduled race from Oulton Park, and the 32 year old knows another strong weekend is required.
“It has been a good weekend. Everyone is pushing so hard out there at the front and we need to sort out a couple of issues with the tyres and bike to get those last few tenths. At the end of the day we beat the World Superbike guys fair and square and that's amazing. It would have been good to beat Kiyo and Rutter but I saw Brookes had a DNF which helps our chances for the Show Down. I'm really happy to get another podium, but I want to do better at Cadwell and get in that top six.”
Teammate Alex Lowes endured a miserable weekend that unfortunately yielded no points. The youngster from Lincoln sacrificed race one by switching to slicks in an attempt to secure a good grid slot for race two but an off-track excursion undid that hard work.
Lowes could only manage 16th in race three to compete a weekend to forget for the 20 year old, but he is still looking with optimism towards the next round at Cadwell Park.
“All in all it was a bit of a rubbish weekend but I tried 100% and now I know where I need to improve. I'm not that far off the pace, when I was in seventh in the first Sunday race I was feeling good, but I made a mistake. Despite the results I enjoyed the racing this weekend and we have identified what it is about the bike we need to concentrate on to make it better, so I'm confident for Cadwell.”
Howie Mainwaring also took his first win of the year in the National Superstock 1000 race, giving Team Owner Nick Morgan the perfect birthday present to mark the weekend.
“Gary had some excellent rides this weekend, we just need to get the bike working for him towards the end of the race a bit better and we need to get behind Alex. At the moment it just isn't going his way, that happens and it's up to us to help bring him back up. He has proved he can do it, we just need to get him to do it consistently. At the end of the day we are leaving Brands with two rostrums, keeping our record of at least one at every round this year, and I'm going home smelling of champagne on my birthday!”