Team WFR target elusive first podium at Oulton Park

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TEAM WFR will aim to bag a so-far elusive first podium of the 2012 British Superbike season at Oulton Park this weekend.

The Ossett-based constructors travel to the Cheshire circuit having seen their three riders clock up respectable points so far this year but fail to make the top three.

The sixth round of the championship this weekend will give WFR the chance to get that monkey off their backs with two races taking place.

James Westmoreland came agonisingly close on his 24th birthday last time out at Knockhill but had to make do with a good fifth-placed finish in Scotland.

It was a round of more mixed fortunes for the three Ossett riders north of the border.

Qualifying saw Graeme Gowland take seventh on the grid, while Westmoreland was ninth quickest and Alex Lowes finished 11th.

There was little change in the positions in a tough first race that gave little in the way of overtaking.

Gowland dropped back a position to finish eighth, with Lowes swapping positions with Westmoreland to finish ninth, with the latter crossing the line in 11th.

The second race proved more successful, especially for Westmoreland.

He didn’t get the start he wanted, dropping back to ninth after starting fifth on the grid, but found a way back through the pack to claim fifth.

Lowes wasn’t too far behind in eighth and Gowland finished ninth.

The points leave Westmoreland ninth overall in the championship ahead of this weekend’s races at Oulton Park, with Lowes in tenth and Gowland 12th.

WFR’s British GT4 drivers, Jody Fannin and Warren Hughes, have time to reflect on opening up a 52-point gap at the top of the championship.

The pair raced at the famous Brands Hatch circuit in the fourth round and took another victory despite having to settle for third place on the starting grid.

Their success contrasted the fortunes of the team’s GT3 team of Riki Christodoulou and Jody Firth, who’ve yet to secure a point in their class this year.

Their quest wasn’t helped by a mechanical failure that forced the team to replace their engine and miss practice and qualifying, resulting in an 18th-placed finish after starting from last on the grid.

Both car teams will be back in action at Snetterton next month.

See today’s Wakefield Express for all the latest sports news from around the district.