September 12, 2019
British Superbikes GP2 Championship
To sum up recent races for Sam it has very much been a case of trial and error. As a team, they have struggled with setup and it’s something that happens to everyone in Motorsport at some stage in their careers. But it’s fair to say they have now hit the nail on the head with Sam getting an all-time personal best lap last weekend.
Sam was off to a flyer in qualifying finishing third in class and thirteenth overall. Although the top two were some distance ahead Sam had pressure from behind and knew that finishing on the podium was going to be a tough task.
Race one saw Sam off to a good start as he got himself up to twelfth place in the early stages. The IDWE Racing rider would eventually settle into thirteenth place and as the laps ticked by the threat of Ross Twyman started to grow. Heading into the final two laps Twyman was now right on the tale of Wilford and the slightest mistake would be very costly.
However, Wilford kept his cool and would just do enough to hold off Twyman to get himself on the podium. It was Sam’s first podium of the season since round four at Brands Hatch and ended a frustrating spell giving Sam some confidence that he desperately needed.
That extra confidence was clear to see in race two, after a difficult start to the race Sam quickly went on the recovery moving up from sixteenth to thirteenth in two laps. With Twyman up the road in third Sam had to get a move on and as we went in to the second half of the race he was in to eleventh with Twyman just ahead.
In his push for the podium Sam set his all-time record at Oulton Park with an impressive 1:38.955 which was one second quicker than what he had done in qualifying. It halved the gap to just one second to the leaders and would see him take third in class and tenth overall with just three laps remaining.
Despite pressure on the final lap Sam would hold on to take another podium giving him a good haul of points. However, more importantly it ended a long time away from the rostrum and Sam will certainly be one to watch next time out at Assen.
Sam Wilford: ”It has been a tough few months for us since Donington earlier in the season, I have struggled to feel comfortable on the bike. We have tried everything and eventually, we have found something that I like and we can get back on the pace. Looking back at the weekend, I feel that with the lap time in race two in the 38s we can be competitive in the remaining races and fight to be second in the Championship. I am really looking forward to Assen and see what we can achieve there. I want to thank all my sponsors, supporters and the great team I have around me, who have been working so hard throughout the season to find what we have been looking for and all that hard work is starting to pay off.”