10 juli 2018  
  • 2 fourth place finishes for Glenn Irwin at Knockhill
  • Glenn Irwin now 4th in the championship
  • Moto Rapido Ducati and Taylor Mackenzie part company

The Be Wiser Ducati Racing Team enjoyed a strong day of racing at Knockhill in Scotland where Paul Bird’s Penrith-based team were competing in round five of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship and saw both Glenn and Andrew Irwin picking up a good haul of points in both races. But Moto Rapido Ducati and Taylor Mackenzie did not compete in the races after mutually parting company.

Having qualified for the first 30-lap race in fourth place aboard the factory-supported Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R, 28-year-old Glenn made a good start to move up into third place behind Leon Haslam and Jake Dixon and there he remained until half race distance before slipping back to fourth place. There was little to choose between the top five riders but, try as he might, Glenn was unable to get back up into a podium position and had to settle for fourth at the chequered flag.

With the third fastest lap of the race, the elder Carrickfergus brother started from the front row of the grid for the second race later in the day and it followed a similar pattern to that of earlier in the day. Glenn ran in the top five throughout the sun-drenched race and moved up to fourth place with ten laps of the race remaining where he duly brought the Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R home for his second successive fourth place finish.

Team-mate and younger brother Andrew also had a good day on only his second meeting substituting for the injured defending champion Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne on the Be Wiser Ducati Panigale R. The 23-year-old started the first race from 14th on the grid, and he gained two places on the opening lap to move up into 12th. By lap 17, he was dicing for a top ten placing but with five laps to go he slipped to 11th which is where he finished to pick up five well-earned points.

Starting the second race from 11th place, Andrew held his position for the first part of the race but by half race distance he’d moved up into the top ten. He kept chipping away and with just five laps to go, he’d moved up into an excellent eighth place which he held until the end.

Glenn Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati #2) – Race 1, 4th – Race 2, 4th
“I felt today’s results were the best we could get as you could clearly see the circuit suited the Kawasakis more. Together with the team, we worked really well, and we leave in a healthy position with 26 points which is a good haul for the championship. I’m disappointed not to have won as I was desperate to do that for the Dunlop family. William was a good friend of mine and it’s been a difficult weekend personally. My results today aren’t really significant compared to what the Dunlop family are going through and my thoughts are very much with them.”

Andrew Irwin (Be Wiser Ducati #18) – Race 1, 11th – Race 2, 8th
“It’s been a really enjoyable meeting for me and I’m really enjoying my racing at the minute. When you’re enjoying it, you’re generally fast and my aim is to simply keep improving. To get two strong finishes in just my second British Superbike outing is very pleasing so I’ll keep chipping away and look to edge closer to the top six group next time out. I’d also like to echo Glenn’s comments that all our thoughts are with the Dunlops after the tragic loss of William this weekend.”

Johnny Mowatt, Be Wiser Ducati Team Co-ordinator
“Firstly, our condolences go out to the Dunlop family at this very difficult time. As for the results, Glenn came away with a good haul of points from the weekend considering this isn’t the strongest circuit for the Be Wiser Ducati. It’s shown in the past that with a clear track we can do the lap times but when it comes to the races on Sunday, we are missing in a few areas compared to our competitors. As for Andrew, he rode superbly in both races just missing out on a top six finish. Each time he rides the bike, he’s learning more and more which can only be a good thing for future races. We’ll go to Brands Hatch in good spirits and hopefully with a few upgrades from Ducati, that will give the boys something to fight with at the sharp end in a fortnight’s time.”

Steve Moore, Moto Rapido Team Owner
“This is an extremely tough racing class and this season is no exception, while 2018 pre-season was promising the results have not come our way together. It’s just not happened, and we have exhausted all the options to make the Ducati suit Taylor and he has decided to leave the team. We part on friendly terms and thank him for his effort and professionalism. I still believe he has a great racing future. We expect to make another team announcement shortly.”
Taylor Mackenzie
“I’m really sad to be leaving the Moto Rapido team. For some reason I’ve struggled to achieve the results I know I’m capable of in the Superbike class this season. The team have been fantastic from day one and I wish them all the very best in the future. I have no immediate plans, but I hope to be back racing as soon as possible.”