O'Halloran tops opening test for McAMS Yamaha

O'Halloran tops opening test for McAMS Yamaha

Jason O’Halloran led the way as testing for the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship got underway. The Australian lapped 0.5 seconds under the lap record to top the opening Snetterton test after three days on track. New to the team for 2022, Tim Neave led the way in the Superstock class on the Edwards 1902 R1.

Hungrier than ever before after narrowly missing out on the title in 2021 to team-mate Mackenzie, O’Halloran entered the opening test with a clear plan for the three-days with new crew chief Les Pearson. The #22 side of the garage spent the entire test flat out, trying different settings as they evaluated the 2022 R1.

Ending two of the three days on top, O’Halloran’s time of 1’46.575 in the final session saw him 0.072 sec ahead of former World Champion Tom Sykes.

Having broken his ankle and dislocated his shoulder in January, reigning champion Tarran Mackenzie was apprehensive ahead of the opening test. Not certain he’d ride until a little over a week ago, he rolled out of pit lane donning the #1 on Friday morning. Under the instruction to take it gently and ease himself back in, Mackenzie focused on building his bike strength up but soon felt able to improve the bike and his lap time. While his ankle was fine, his shoulder did cause him some discomfort but in spite of this, he ended the test seventh fastest just over half a second off O’Halloran’s time.

It was a strong start for the Raceways Motorcycles-run team in the Superstock class too with new-signing Tim Neave leading the way on his Edwards 1902 R1. The Lincolnshireman’s time of 1’49.228 saw him 0.32 sec ahead of Alex Olsen in second.

Jason O'Halloran

Pos: 1st Time: 1'46.571

“First test of the year done and it’s been a really good few days for us, the weather has been perfect so we’ve had loads of track time. It’s good to be back with the team, we’ve done a lot of work through this test. I’ve tried so many different versions of the bike here, at least one maybe two per session which is perfect for information and data. It’s really encouraging to have been able to go fast on pretty much all of the settings we’ve ridden and also often when you make quite big changes it takes a bit of time to get used to them and find speed, but that wasn’t the case here. To go fast at the end is good, I made quite a big mistake on the fast lap too, but more importantly testing is to gain information and feeling and I am very happy with what we have achieved. The whole team have done a great job and I’m looking forward to the next test.”

Tarran Mackenzie

Pos: 7th Time: 1'47.156

“Overall I’m really happy, having had two months of pretty much nothing but recovery and little training I didn’t know how I’d feel on the bike. I’ve surprised myself a little bit as I didn’t feel too bad with my shoulder or fitness wise either. Over the last two days I have got more confident and comfortable with the bike, which was pretty much the same as it was at Snetterton last year, so it was just about doing laps and getting the feeling back. In that last run we made a little change to the bike which helped a lot and I gained some confidence, it was only seven laps but it was the longest run I’d done over the three days so I’m happy with that. It’s put us in a good direction with myself and the bike moving forward.”

Tim Neave

Edwards 1902 Superstock Team, Pos: 1st Time: 1'49.228

“What a start to the year. I’m feeling mega on the R1, every session we have been out the feeling has improved and we’ve gone faster. I’m really happy to have ended up fastest as we had a few issues at the start of the test so lost a bit of track time. 1’49.228 is quicker than I’ve ever gone around here by some way and I know there are more steps we can take with the package so I am really looking forward to the remaining tests and getting the season started at Silverstone.”

Steve Rodgers

Team Principal

“It’s been a solid start to the year for the team on all counts to be honest. We knew Jason would be quick, he was so dominant in the early part last year but what is very encouraging is he has tried a lot with the bike over these three days and whatever he tried with the bike he was quick. This test was about getting back on the bike for Tarran, so for him to complete pretty much every session, get a good number of laps in and only be 0.5 seconds off the pace is fantastic. Now he needs to continue building up his strength ahead of the start of the year. In Superstock, Tim Neave has really impressed me, we had a few issues to sort at the start of the test but once he got going he just kept improving and his lap time at the end shows the potential of both Tim and the R1 in Superstock-spec.”

Bennetts British Superbike Championship, R&G Official Test, Snetterton, combined session result:

Pos Rider Time Bike
1 Jason O'Halloran 1:46.571 Yamaha
2 Tom Sykes 1:46.643 Ducati
3 Luke Hopkins 1:46.669 Kawasaki
4 Josh Brookes 1:46.686 BMW
5 Rory Skinner 1:46.735 Kawasaki
6 Danny Buchan 1:47.111 BMW
7 Tito Rabat 1:47.156 Yamaha
8 Peter Hickman 1:47.314 BMW
9 Danny Kent 1:47.317 Honda
10 Tommy Bridewell 1:47.392 Ducati
  • Tarran Snett Test
  • Tim Neave Test

2023 Bennetts British Superbike Championship

Pos Rider Team Bike PTS
1 Glenn Irwin PBM Ducati Ducati 360.5
2 Tommy Bridewell PBM Ducati Ducati 360
3 Kyle Ryde RICH Energy OMG Racing Yamaha Yamaha 300
4 Leon Haslam ROKiT BMW Motorrad Team BMW 283
5 Lee Jackson FS-3 Racing Kawasaki Kawasaki 280.5
6 Jason O'Halloran McAMS Yamaha Yamaha 276.5
7 Josh Brookes FHO Racing BMW 250
8 Christian Iddon Oxford Ducati Ducati 222
9 Ryan Vickers OMG Racing Yamaha 207
10 Charlie Nesbitt Hawk Racing Honda 122.5

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