Superb debut for Evans as Shropshire's racers return to Oliver's Mount

Now the dust has settled on his debut at Oliver's Mount, James Evans has been able to reflect on a superb weekend competing in England's only road race.

Evans, from Shrewsbury, even managed to rebuild his race bike in just a few days after crashing during the N G Road Racing series, at Donington Park, the weekend before.

But after working through the day and night, the 37-year-old – who was also joined by Bishop Castle's Barry Furber, Wem's Ben Plant and sidecar passenger Tom Bryant, also from Shrewsbury, to compete on the 2.43-mile road racing circuit – ensured he was on the start line for the Spring Cup in Scarborough.

"As a newcomer to Oliver's Mount, we had three citing laps on a wet damp track then we had practice and, on a damp, drying track, I managed a lap time of 2:08, which I was happy with," said Evans.

"I was then put into heat three with some of the famous Isle of Man TT racers.

"After a good start I got up to 13th but a few laps in I made mistake and lost a few places, which put me back to 17th, although my lap time improve to 2:03, which meant I was going in the right direction.

"I started to feel better on the bike but as there were more than 60 600cc bikes, the riders had to be split in to heat one and two.

"Unfortunately, I didn't get in to those races but was put into the Support Race A."

Evans lined up seventh on the grid but suffered another bad start after the rider directly in front of him looked like he had stalled.

"It's a very narrow track and it meant I went round the first corner in 11th, so straight away I had my work cut out, but I soon started picking off the riders.

"I passed one on the inside but then out-braked myself, losing the place but that only made me more determined to push on so I kept on making my way through the pack."

Evans eventually had second and third place in his sights and was less than a second behind when he crossed the line in a superb fourth place, just missing out on a podium on his debut.

He also set a personal best lap time of 1:57.265 – the fastest of the race.

"I was mega chuffed with the results and happy to be going home with my achievements, especially after such a hectic week," said Evans.

"I would like to thank everyone who's helped me out over the years with racing, which includes my friends, family, sponsors and supporters, all the track marshals and medics, the organisers – all the people that make it happen.

"It was massive mission to rebuild the bike after losing the front down Craner Curves at Donnington on the test day, which smashed the bike to pieces – not what we had planned.

"I got away very lightly, with just a scratch on my head and a bruised finger, but I determination to make Oliver's Mount and with help from a lot of people we managed to get the bike looking sweet again before my debut.

"A big thanks goes to my mum, Diane Evans, as well as Naomi Wallace, Tasha Wallace, Stacey Wallace, Luke Sumner, Andrew Lycett and Alan Bunn .

Evans is looking for sponsorship for the rest of his campaign. Any interested is asked to get in touch by emailing probikerepairs@yahoo.co.uk direct.

Furber was also back in action at Oliver's Mount on his new machinery and managed to pick up a 12th in heat three in the 600cc class.

The result placed him in the Supersport 600 A race but unfortunately he was forced to retire.

However, he had more success in the Classic Superbike race, finishing in sixth in the first and seventh in the second.

And on his 650cc lightweight machine, he went one better again, finishing fifth in the Twins Group A race.

Plant enjoyed his first real run out of the campaign finishing 18th in the Twins Heat 1, which put in the Twins Group B race. The Wem star went on to finish in 10th.

The weekend, however, did not go to plan for sidecar racer Bryant, who had teamed up with Michael Russell once again to compete on the roads, as the pair were forced to retire from both races.

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