Assen Race 1

Matty closed the gap to the championship top ten with a solid seventh place finish in the weekend’s first race at Assen TT Circuit following a battling drive.

Starting from seventh on the grid, after the threat of a three place drop was lifted prior to the race, Matty made a less than ideal getaway at the start and lost two places as the car bogged down with wheel spin.

With overtaking incredibly difficult on a track designed primarily for motorbike racing, the loss of two positions dealt a further blow to Matty’s hopes of recovering from a disappointing qualifying session, however a safety car deployment following a tussle in the midfield gave a glimmer of hope as the field closed up.

Resuming after two laps, the action was intense as all the drivers looked to take advantage of the proximity of their rivals and steal a position as the green flags waved.

Locked into a battle between the runners in sixth to ninth places, Matty moved up to eighth place following a mistake from seventh placed Louis Delatraz opened a gap for Ukyo Sasahara and Matty to drive through.

Set up for speed on the straights with less wing, the recovering Delatraz placed Matty under huge amounts of pressure over the next four laps as he tried to force his way past, but the Fineside backed driver was able to resist these attentions and close the gap to the sixth place battle between Sasahara and the American Ryan Tveter.

Matty was less than a second behind the pair when a mistake for Sasahara meant the Japanese driver dropped to ninth, allowing the North Eastern racer to regain the seventh position from where he started.

With enough time remaining for a further four laps, Matty set about trying to reel in Tveter’s 0.7second lead and while he did reduce the gap, the effects of spending the majority of the 25 minute race in the dirty air of cars in front, had compromised the performance of Matty’s AVF car sufficiently that he was unable to overhaul the sixth placed driver.