8 July 2013


Graeme Gowland #81


The Snetterton 300 circuit in Norfolk sizzled under blue skies as it hosted the fifth round of the 2013 MCE British Superbike Championship this weekend, 5-7 July.

The Seton Tuning Yamaha team made the short trip from its Colchester base to be rewarded with both Graeme ‘Gowla’ Gowland and James Mutton posting top ten finishes in sweltering conditions around the long 2.97m flat circuit.

Despite being forced to sit out the second free practice session and the team having to rebuild Gowla’s Supersport engine over Friday night, the Northumbrian posted a blistering lap time at the close of Qualifying that would see him start the Motorpoint British Supersport Sprint race from third position on the front row of the grid.

The 10-lapper would once again see Gowla lock horns at the sharp end with McConnell and O’Halloran as they vied for fourth spot. The trio raced wheel to wheel, split by a tenth or two as they crossed the white stripe for the close of each lap. Gowla pushed through to fourth mid-race but was unfortunate to lose out in the closing stages, nudged back to take the chequered flag in sixth.

Gowla’s fastest lap time of 1:52.420s would see the 27-year old head row two for the main 15 lap Supersport race under blazing skies on Sunday afternoon. Buoyed by heading the timing sheets in Warm-Up, Gowla lined his Seton Tuning Yamaha up on the grid full of determination to solidify his top 5 championship position and looking to make ground on McConnell in fourth.

Gowla made another strong start to make the break with the leading group, shrugging off the attentions of first Mackenzie then Mossey as he hunted down McConnell for the final podium position. A spirited and determined final few laps saw Gowla halve the gap to the Triumph rider to take fourth at the chequered flag by just seven tenths - his joint highest position of the season. Although the coveted podium positions still elude him, Gowla left Snetterton as the highest placed Yamaha in both Supersport races, extending his run of scoring double figures in each race.


James Mutton #34


Buoyed by team principal, Phil Seton’s success at the Norfolk circuit last weekend where he took pole and the double in the Hottrax Motogrande 600 series, James Mutton looked odds-on for a second row start in only his second outing for the team in the Pirelli National Superstock 600 class.

James raised a few eyebrows as he posted the fourth quickest time in Free Practice before finishing Q1 in fifth. Looking set for a second row start, James set a fast opening sector time as the clock ticked down in Q2. However, the young Australian crashed out at Oggies, and unable to post a further lap time was pushed back to 11th on the grid.

Baulked at the start and caught in traffic through the Montreal-to-Williams complex, James rounded out the opening lap in 17th. Grit and determination saw James elevate his Seton Tuning Yamaha R6 through the field over successive laps as he locked horns first with Godfrey then Whitaker as he honed in on the top ten. The opening race of the day would become a war of attrition with 12 non-finishers overall. Two crashes over the closing laps provided deserved reward with a ninth place at the flag for James’ first points of the season.

The team will make the short trip to Brands Hatch GP in Kent for round 6 over the weekend of 19-21 July.

Phil Seton, Team Principal: “That was a very tough weekend and the whole team have put a lot of work into getting the results. We don’t have the finances to do what we need to compete effectively at Supersport level at the moment and can only build one engine per round. With a technical issue with Graeme’s bike on Friday we were on the back foot. I had to borrow an engine from a customer and use parts from the two to make one. As a result, it was 3-4bhp down which at a track like Snetterton is a major disadvantage. We concentrated on the chassis, ensuring that Graeme had the optimum set-up for the weekend. Graeme got the very best out of the bike in qualifying and the two races. We chose the harder tyre and it came into its own at the end of the race. Possibly not soon enough, but he was closing in dramatically on second & third. Graeme rode exceptionally well and was rewarded with two brilliant results taking everything into consideration.

I have to thank the whole team but especially Callum Rank and Shayne Hadland for their hard work, working all hours of the day and night to ensure the bikes made the grid. I would also like to thank Kirk Blacklock for the loan of his cylinder head for Graeme's bike.

James had a fantastic weekend. He worked incredibly well with the team throughout the weekend. From the first time he rode our bike, his smooth style and ability on a bike showcased just what a future talent he is going to be.James was 5th after Q1 and was unfortunate to have a small tumble whilst on his fastest lap in Q2. But 11th on the grid is excellent considering his previous best was 35th! He dropped at the start but showed some of his true potential as he battled through to finish ninth. I am over the moon with his performance and it gives us something to build on for the remainder of the season.

Moving on to Brands Hatch, financially we may be struggling and if a replacement sponsor doesn’t come on board I may be forced to withdraw Graeme from the Supersport class - a situation I don’t relish being faced with now he has solidified fifth in the Championship.”

Graeme Gowland #81: "It's been another good consistent weekend and again just on the edge of our first podium! We missed Free Practice 2 with a technical fault so to come out Saturday morning and qualify 3rd was really good. Saturday's race was a great battle with Billy and Jason. I got a good start in Sunday's race and sat 4th most of the way, we could have done with the race being a bit longer because I had opted for the harder rear tyre! But I'm happy with 4th and I'm sure a podium is just around the corner for the Seton Tuning R6, providing we find a new sponsor in order to complete the season."

James Mutton #34: "It was a solid weekend for me on the Seton Tuning Yamaha R6. I started the weekend really strong ending Friday in provisional 5th after first qualifying. A small crash in Saturday's qualifying cost me as I wasn't able to improve my time and was bumped back to 11th on the grid for Sundays race.

For the race I fought hard after being run wide on the first lap and made my way from 17th to end up with my first top 10 position with a 9th place. Again I can't thank everyone enough in the Seton Tuning Yamaha team for believing in me and helping me get a solid result. I'm looking forward to Brands Hatch and will be working hard to improve myself to continue moving forward."

Images © Steve Hutchings


2013 Race Calendar

Snetterton 300 Results

Motorpoint British Supersport
Sprint - 10 Laps

1. Seeley, 2. Wilson, 3. Mossey, 4. McConnell, 5. O'Halloran, 6. Gowland
Main Event - 15 Laps
1. Seeley, 2. Wilson, 3. McConnell, 4. Gowland, 5. Mossey

Championship Points
1. Seeley - 205, 2. Easton - 165, 3. Wilson - 160, 4. McConnell - 152, 5. Gowland - 109

Pirelli National Superstock 600
Race - 12 Laps

1. Simpkin, 2. Hedger, 3. Rouse, 4. Law, 5. Day, 9. Mutton

Championship Points
1. Simpkin - 117, 2. Hedger - 89, 3. Collier - 70, 4. Hastings - 64, 5. Lodge - 64, 22. Mutton - 7

Release issued by Mark at Shippey PR on behalf of Seton Tuning Yamaha
e: | t: 07971 028 530
Seton Tuning LTD, 11 Moorside Business Centre, Colchester, Essex CO1 2TJ






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