| i-Style Aprilia Racing Team rider Ben Attard dominated the Formula Oz Class at the final round of the 2011 Australian FX-Superbike Championship, carding a 100% win record over the weekend, winning all 8 races, 5-6 November at Sydney’s Easter Creek Raceway.
All but one of the Formula Oz races over the weekend saw Ben charge to lead by turn one and pull away from the forty-plus bike field to a clear victory, the outright speed of the Aprilia RSV-4 Factory clearly evident in the western Sydney heat.
Race one on Sunday morning saw Ben demolish the Formula Oz lap record by half a second to an impressive 1:31.891. With only Friday practice to fine tune the i-Style Aprilia - at a circuit the team had not been to with this motorcycle - did not prove to be a challenge for the team. Ben was on the pace after only a handful of laps thanks to the slick work in the pits, Sundays lap record a direct result. Even more impressive was the fact the teams legendary Technical Director, Warren Willing, was absent this weekend while on duty at Valencia in Spain with the MZ RE Honda Team in the Moto2 Championship.
Having developed the bike this year on Dunlop’s sensational N-Tech slick, the team had another challenge to deal with in the Thunder class for Sunday’s races, a control tyre of different specification and profile. This made it more difficult for the team, using a different controlled tyre for the pro thunder event which meant very quick geometry and suspension changes, because of the dramatic changes to the bike, the team decided to mainly concentrate their efforts on the Formula Oz class over the weekend.
However the humid Sydney weather threw the i-Style Aprilia Team a wild card from left field with a short but severe burst of rain that called a brief halt to the racing program – mid-afternoon - on Sunday. With a mainly wet and slippery track once again providing little testing benefit for the team – the decision was made to miss race two of Formula Oz.
With the progressive grid employed in the series, race three – the last of the day – would see Ben start the five lap race from row five of the grid – an unfamiliar position for Ben and the Aprilia. A brilliant start and skill in the heavy traffic allowed Ben to take the lead from former Kirk McCarthy Award winner, Chas Hern, on lap two and pull away to another victory, by over 4 seconds.
After carding his first race wins of the season, rider Ben Attard was impressed with the speed of the Aprilia RSV-4 at Eastern Creek “In all honesty, a 1:31.8 is only scratching the surface of what this bike is capable of around here, race 3 was a bit exciting having to start so far back but we got to the front and got the job done. All credit goes to the team this weekend, Brain and Skip are just so dedicated in the way they prepare that motorcycle”.
“This has been a great weekend for Aprilia as we got to showcase to a different audience - the awesome power of the RSV4 Aprilia” commented Steve Trinder, Team Owner.
” After a two year absence, it was a delight to see a very professionally run series, a generous format to suit all competitors, and I was amazed at the size of the field in each category. With the television coverage and one of the best racetracks in the country we were able to unleash the Aprilia in two separate categories, both being televised, using the one bike, which shows just how versatile the Aprilia RSV4 can be. The bike performed faultlessly, Ben rode it superbly and the team worked hard all weekend, that lap record was a great reward for everyone”
The team’s sights are now firmly set on the final round of the QBE Australian Superbike Championship at the world’s best racetrack – Phillip Island – over the weekend 17-18 November
The i-Style Aprilia Racing team’s 2011 season would not be possible without the continued, ongoing support of their sponsors.
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