Round 1 brought 21 year old Josh Owens and the CDH Rapid Team to Cheshire’s Oulton Park circuit, accompanied by 4000 BSB fans. Conditions were mixed to start but the weather really cleared up in true Cheshire style.
For this season, the qualifying format has changed. The combined times from Fridays free practices determine your qualifying group for Saturday. The first 12 riders from Fridays free practice sessions automatically gain their place in qualifying 2 (Q2) with the remaining riders in qualifying 1 group (Q1), however, riders in Q1 still have the opportunity to gain a place in Q2 with the top 6 placing riders in Q1 going on to run in Q2 for the top 18 places on the grid. Free practice 1 was a wet session, Josh scored an outstanding P6, in free practice 2 Josh scored P17, this meant he would start the qualifying session in Q1, during the qualifying session Josh placed P3 which gave him a place in Q2 to fight for the top 18 positions, however upon trying something new with the bike, it went the opposite way resulting in a crash on the last lap of Q1.
This was a devastating time for Josh and the team, however they pulled together and got the bike on the grid for race 1 on Saturday afternoon with seconds to spare. Josh started the race in 18th position however had to retire the race due to technical issues with the bike.
Sunday presented a fresh day and optimism for the 2 races to come. Sunday has a small morning warm up session of 10 minutes however the bike faced a small technical issue and had to come in. With this sorted for race 2 Josh was in 23rd position on the grid with a fighting mentality. Josh had an immense race finishing in 16th position just shy of the point scoring position however this was a great position and gave a real confidence boost to josh and the team going into race 3.
Josh started race 3 in 16th position, and by lap 8 was racing in 13th position between Rory Skinner and Glenn Irwin, this was the best position Josh and the team had been in to date and the race was looking really promising however the bike had to retire due to technical issues on lap 9.
Despite all of the unfortunate events of the weekend Josh and the team are feeling a mass amount of potential for the season to come with plenty more opportunities to point score in future rounds.
Round 2 is at Knockhill race circuit in Scotland in less than a fortnight and Josh and Rapid CDH Racing team are raring to get started.
” This weekend has been a mega start to the season for us it has been great to be back riding with everyone, it has left me feeling like i was racing instead of just at the bar, this has given myself and the team a well needed confidence boost and fuelled my enthusiasm to continue like this for the season to come. Unfortunately there was a few mistakes and issues but that is racing, were latching onto the positives and its looking to be a good year.
I cannot wait to get back on track for round 2 next week up in Scotland to have my first go on the superbike at knockhill, this will be yet another learning curve for me, hopefully we can bring home some points. I just want to give a massive thank you to all my personal sponsors and the team who make it all happen”