MOTORCYCLING: Sleaford sidecar man Horspole moves up F1 standings

Gary Horspole and Jimmy Connell at Assen. Photo: Dave Yeomans
Gary Horspole and Jimmy Connell at Assen. Photo: Dave Yeomans

Two sixth places at Assen moved Sleaford driver Gary Horspole and his passenger Jimmy Connell up into seventh place in the overall standings with one round and two races remaining in the 2016 British F1 Sidecar championship.

Qualifying at the Cathedral of Speed went well for Horspole and Connell who were sixth in their class and seventh overall in the mixed grid of British and Dutch championship riders, and they began the first race from a fourth row grid position.

From the off, they settled into seventh place and on lap two of nine they passed Holland/Watson to move up into sixth position overall, fifth in class. But their progress was short lived as Holland fought back and demoted them back to seventh – sixth in class – one lap later.

Horspole and Connell remained in that position for the remainder of the race to cross the finish line for a fine sixth place in the British section of the race to pick up 10 championship points.

Starting the second race on Sunday from the fourth row once again, Horspole and Connell held eighth through the first two laps before passing Bryan/Hughes and gradually pulling clear.

By lap six they were holding a lonely position of seventh overall and although the outfit behind began to make inroads towards them, Horspole and Connell crossed the finish line in a comfortable seventh place overall – sixth in the British race – to pick up a further 10 championship points which elevated them to seventh position in the overall championship standings on 128 points

The final round is at Brands Hatch over the weekend of October 14/16 and the two races will score double points.

If Horspole and Connell can secure two good results they could elevate themselves further up the final championship standings.