Although Jason O’Halloran took to social media to say this weekend was “not what we wanted”, it is important to still keep the McAMS Yamaha Team in mind as serious title contenders for 2019. Jason O’Halloran has shown good form ever since swinging his leg over the YZF-R1 machine in the winter tests.
Having topped the Portmaio and the Silverstone tests, you can understand why “The O’Show” is possibly feeling a little subdued with his current run of results. However, this is the strongest start to a season that both McAMS Yamaha and Jason have had for some time, although the results don’t show the constancy that he has had.
It is also worth noting that O’Halloran arrived at Oulton Park with a cracked humorous, after a crash in testing. This wasn’t revealed until after the second round was complete, but he still managed to achieve fourth and seventh respectively.
Race one at Donington Park saw Jason fighting with the leading group be when fellow countryman Josh Brookes high-sided his BeWiser Ducati coming out of the final corner. The McAMS rider had to take avoiding action and, once again, had to find his rhythm. He eventually came across the line in fifth and then, in race two, managed to secure seventh place. Both of these are still a stronger result than Josh Brookes managed last year.
Race three, and Jason, unfortunately, picked up his second DNF of the year after a mid-race crash and understandably displayed frustration after the fall. Next up is Brands Hatch, a place where Jason has previously shown brilliant form.
Tarran Mackenzie had another strong weekend and, similarly to his team-mate, showed that he is a serious title contender. In race one, “T-Mac” managed to secure his third podium of the season and finished only +0.8 off of the race winner, Scott Redding.
Race two saw Tarran again battling with the leading group, but this time getting knocked back to fifth as a resurgent Josh Brookes searched for redemption after his crash in Saturday’s race one.
The final race of the day saw the young Scotsman collect yet another podium, his fourth podium in seven races, and with his lowest result being eighth in race one at Oulton Park, it seems as though Tarran Mackenzie is almost the forgotten title contender, despite leading the championship until the end of the Donington Triple Header.
The McAMS Yamaha team have taken major steps forward over winter, with Jason O’Halloran clearly showing consistency and Tarran Mackenzie clearly working hard to iron out the mistakes he made through the 2018 season. Although with Paul Bird Motorsport BeWiser Ducati Team on an excellent run of form, dominated at both Oulton Park and Donington Park, it’s maybe not as cut and dry as it appears. Make no mistake – both the McAMS Yamaha duo are more than capable of mounting a title fight.