In the first race, Shakey was in fourth place and James in ninth when rain and hail started to fall. On slick tyres James crashed at the Old Hairpin and a minute later, Shakey high-sided at Schwantz at 140mph as the rain robbed the track surface of grip. The race was red flagged and taken back a lap with Shakey eventually being awarded fifth place behind winner Gregorio Lavilla on a Ducati.
In the second, event Shakey crashed out on the warm-up lap on a track covered in standing water. Haydon made a brilliant start from eighth to second but then went grass-tracking before rejoining well down the field. He crashed on lap two at Goddards and showed his determination when he rejoined the race before crashing again and retiring on lap nine at McCleans as he struggled to find grip in the wet conditions. Vivaldi Suzuki’s Scott Smart won the race.
Both Rizla Suzuki racers are battered and bruised after their crashes but have no serious injuries and are already looking forward to the third round of the Championship at Thruxton next weekend.
“In the first race I suffered one of the biggest crashes of my career flat out in fifth gear going through the Schwantz curve. It had started to rain and the back end of the bike just came round and I went flying. It was a big crash and I am well bruised after that. The only consolation is the race was declared from a lap earlier and I was awarded fifth place.
“In the second race I went into Coppice on a closed throttle nice and steady on my out lap. The back end came round in slow motion and I couldn’t do anything about it and crashed out. I didn’t have a spare bike for race two after my first race crash and that was unfortunately the end of the day for me.”
“In the opening race the rain started to pour down and going into the Old Hairpin the back end slid away. I held it for what seemed like forever before it high-sided and I crashed out. It was a real shame because I was enjoying the race and the bike was handling better than ever.
“In the next race the wet and slippery conditions caught me out twice. The first time I remounted and was cutting back through the field towards the front when I crashed again and this time I couldn’t get restarted. It’s been a tough weekend and I hope the next round at Thruxton is dry.”
Robert Wicks - Team Manager:
“It’s been a hard day at the races for Rizla Suzuki with five crashes in four race starts. The conditions were awful and played their part in causing those accidents and we will count our good fortune that both riders can walk away from Donington with minor bruising injuries and nothing more serious.
“This weekend we proved in the dry we have front running pace. That’s a step forward for us and we will take the positives from that to the next round at the team’s home circuit at Thruxton.
“Well done to Vivaldi Suzuki’s Scott Smart on taking victory in a dramatic and wet second race. Seeing a GSX-R1000 win is encouraging for all of us.”
Race One Result: 1: Gregorio Lavilla (Ducati) 20:53.166, 2: Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) +0.134, 3: Leon Haslam (Ducati) +5.246, 4: Michael Laverty (Honda) +9.361, 5: Shane Byrne (Rizla Suzuki) +9.591, 6: Karl Harris (Honda) +10.540, 7: Michael Rutter (Honda) +11.533, 8: Jonathan Rea (Honda) +20.235, 9: Dean Thomas (Kawasaki) +22.451, 10: Scott Smart (Suzuki) +23.216. James Haydon (Rizla Suzuki) DNF.
Race Two Result:1: Smart 27:37.071, 2: Haslam +0.576, 3: Lavilla +2.297, 4: Gary Mason (Honda) +5.943, 5: Rea +30.768, 6: Tommy Hill (Yamaha) +33.586, 7: Laverty +36.829, 8: Ollie Bridewell (Suzuki) +59.273, 9: Chris Martin (Honda) +59.297, 10: Malcolm Ashley (Kawasaki) +1:04.142,. James Haydon (Rizla Suzuki) DNF. Shane Byrne (Rizla Suzuki) DNS.
Championship Standings (after two of 13 rounds): 1: Lavilla 82, 2: Kiyonari 58, 3: Haslam 56, 4: Harris 41, 5: Smart 33, 6: Laverty 31, 7: Rea 30, 8: Shane Byrne (Rizla Suzuki) 26, 9: Rutter 25, 10: Thomas 23. 16: James Haydon (Rizla Suzuki) 15.