Dean Ellison

dean ellison

Welcome

Over the recent months I have been putting together my own team for 2009 but at this stage the funding has fallen short and it is unlikely that I will be on the grid for the first round, keep coming back for the latest news!

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Results

24 March Snetterton Official Test
6 April Brands Hatch (GP)
20 April Thruxton
5 May Oulton Park
26 May Donington Park (GP)
15 June Snetterton
29 June Mallory Park
20 July Oulton Park
10 August Knockhill
25 August Cadwell Park
14 September Croft
28 September Silverstone (International)
12 October Brands Hatch (Indy)

RESULTS:

6 April Brands Hatch (GP)

Missed due to injury.




20 April Thruxton

Thruxton has to be one of the most enjoyable circuits on the BSB calender and with the Superbikes hitting a top speed of 200mph it is without doubt the fastest.

As usual the Co-ordit Yamaha was performing well through the speed trap and down the main straight it was one of the fastest bikes on track, all that needed to be done was find a compramise with the set up.

A big mistake at Thruxton is to set the bike up for the slow corners as the advantage gained is so little, so I tried numerous different rear suspension springs trying to find a firm feeling and grip for the fast section at the back of the circuit. We ended the day in p18 but the times were close and I felt that there was plenty in reserve for qualifying.

For qualifying the heavens opened and the wet tyres had to be fitted, this turned out to be a very trying session. I was finding it hard to feel comfortable on the bike and although my pace was down from the fastest lap time I was still tearing up rear tyres within 4 laps, something needed changing on the chassis but during qualifying I didn’t find a solution so I was placed p30 and finished the day very disappointed.

Come race day the weather was looking more promising and after a good morning warm up I was feeling very confident for the races.

Race one started out as I expected when you are at the back of the grid, you are right behind every mistake that is being made and trying to overtake is very difficult because every rider is trying the same thing.

After a lot of overtaking and a fastest lap time of 1.17.6 set on lap 18 of 20 I crossed the line in p21 which for me was very disappointing but it was still progress and I felt a lot more positive going in to race 2.

This was by far a better start for me and by lap 7 I had moved to 21st position and my rear tyre was still feeling strong but unfortunately there had been a crash and a rider was hurt, the race was stopped and had to re-run over 15 laps.

In the re-start my bike didn’t get off the line very well and I dropped from 21st straight back to last place so I had all of the hard work to do again, after running off the track once and a few heart stopping moments I managed to make my way through the field to p15 and in the last few laps I pulled 5 seconds on the group battling for 10th place setting a best of 1.17.4, the gap was still too big to close but I know that now we should be fighting for top ten!




5 May Oulton Park

After a points scoring race at Thruxton I couldn’t get to Oulton Park fast enough, it's a track that's so technical and full of character that once you've mastered it there's nowhere more exciting to race in the UK!

The Co-ordit team had the bikes well prepared for the first free practice session and it was good to be back on one of my favourite circuits. Everything felt good with the settings supplied by Rob Mac racing but I felt that more could be gained if I had a little more RPM in the turns and a bit more weight on the front end so after finishing the first session in P16 it was a good starting point. The afternoon brought me back down to earth as everything that I had wanted to try didn’t improve the bike and by the end of the session I had dropped out of the top 20, after some good advice from Ian Prestwood at Rob Mac Racing I made a small change to the gearing and a big change to my riding style.

Sunday afternoon brought rain and the third free practice was run in very wet conditions which took me a while to find a good feeling, but by running the soft wet tyre and some softer suspension settings I finished the session feeling confident. Qualifying started in damp conditions and I chose slick tyres front and rear very early in the session and it had paid off, when I pulled in for a new rear tyre I was lying in 12th place but with the track drying I needed to get back out ASAP. After fitting a new rear tyre I headed back out but there was a problem with the bike, after a few minutes my computer genious Andrew Harrison diagnosed a faulty wheel speed sensor, this controls the pit lane speed limiter but cannot be disabled so Guy Elvey and Wayne Keen had to prepare the spare bike and get me out for the last 5 minutes. I could only claw my way back up to 25th position and I was very disappointed for everyone in my team, especially team owner Pete Bradshaw.

Monday had been forecast for clear, blue skies and all I wanted was 2 dry races to show how strong we can be but the morning warm up was held in damp conditions and the cloud looked like it was staying.

Race one, the heavens opened and it started to rain, I was expecting to be pulled straight into the pits for a restart but we were lined up on the grid and the lights went out, every rider had a moment going into turn 1 and quite a few crashed out. The restart was a total wet race and we ran with full, soft wets as I wanted a good start, unfortunately the tyres did not last the distance and I was forced to withdraw.

Race 2 was run under dry conditions and at the last minute my crew chief Kev Tompkin fitted a hard compound rear tyre and 6 laps in it started to pay off, my times dropped by over one second per lap and I started to get through the field and I could see some points, then as I exited Foulstons Chicane I hit a stationary bike that was lying in the middle of the track and was thrown into the air and rendered unconscious.

After being examined by Toby Branfoot and his medical team I had only sustained a broken bone in my foot, ligament damage to the ankle, concussion and an all round beating.

It's only been a day but I'm desperate to get fit as fast as possible as I want to pick up where I left off at Thruxton. Unfortunately the crash will put me out of action for Brands Hatch but I'm aiming to be fit for Donington Park on the 26th May.




26 May Donington Park (GP)

Since not making the last round at Brands I have been totally focused on getting my broken foot race fit as I couldn't stand sitting out another round. 2 solid weeks of visits to East Midlands Physiotherapy to get the swelling down, daily swims and light cycling appeared to do the trick along with the chinese herbal remedies!

When I arrived at Donington I was just so pleased to be back so soon and it was great to see that the team had replaced the crashed bike with a newer and more up to date chassis so I was feeling really positive.

In first practice I ran with bike 2 as it needed some miles putting on it and as I was injured it was a good time for basic setup, first I had to lift the gear lever as high as it would go so that I could get my foot under it to change gear then I wanted to lower the rear end to stop it sliding under braking. The first day I did very few laps as the pain was just too much and I wanted to save myself for race day.

Day 2 looked like the bad weather was coming in but the first session stayed dry and I finished in the top 20, qualifying was a different story, it was a full wet session and this year I have struggled to find a good wet setting but after just doing a hand full of laps I qualified 18th on the grid and managed to keep it upright on the slippery Donington circuit.

After a mixed couple of days I was desperate to get racing, the morning warm up session was dry and we were again comfortably within the top 20 and really happy. After popping another pain killer and strapping the foot again with Phiten tape from Knox I was ready to push for 20 laps.

After the first lap I found my feet and started to make my way through the field and on the very last corner I took another place and crossed the line in 14th position bringing home 2 points for the Co-ordit team.

Race 2 started in the same way, I had changed the gearing so that I could run more speed through Redgate and Macleans but this left me with a different gear pattern which meant I lost drive out of the turns until I settled into the new set-up. Once again I found a good pace and started to work my way through the pack and eventually got in to a point scoring position and I could see the potential to finish 14th again. Because I had been pushing so hard to catch up, the front tyre had turned on the wheel and put it out of balance so the bike was chattering through the turns which meant I had to accept a 15th place.

All in all Donington was a great success, points in the bag from both races and now I'm eager to get to Snetterton where I'll be aiming to be 100% fit and chasing top 10's.




15 June Snetterton

After doing so little real training and no testing since Donington because of my foot injuries I was a bit concerned about race fitness going into the race meeting at Snetterton, but after the first day I was 16th fastest, I had no problems with injury and to top it off I was one of the quickest through the speed trap so from then on I just wanted to race.

During Saturday morning free practice I had a percistent technical problem with my number 1 bike and the number 2 bike was under performing out of the turns so it was all hands on deck for my team to fix the bike and by the time qualifying started all the problems had disapeared.

As we all pulled on to the track for our first qualifying lap I could see black clouds coming our way and along with all the other guy's I started to push early for a fast lap, unfortunatley I was stuck in too much traffic and couldn't put a clean lap together so I decided to pull in and get a fresh rear tyre, only to be caught by the rain. I qualified 19th but I knew that my times could be much better so I was disapointed with my starting position but I was confident that I could be strong in the race.

During warm up I wanted to test the harder tyre but my bike broke down with electrical problems which ended the session for me.

Race 1 I used the tyre that I hadn't been able to properly test in warm up, unfortunately it didn't work and I could only manage 17th. However it was close and I was very near to a point scoring finish.

Race 2 was wet and from the start I got myself through to 13th which i held for the entire race but dropped 2 places on the last lap due to the rear tyre breaking up. We finished in the points again but with holding 13th for so long in race 2 I can't wait for Mallory Park to chase that top 10 finish.

Big thanks to all my sponsors and the team.




29 June Mallory Park

The last time I raced at Mallory Park was in 2006 and I clearly remember how tough and demanding the 3 days were and after the first free practice session I knew that I was going to have to dig really deep.

After the first day had finished I was just out of the top 20 and the only way I could get some time back would be to improve on the brakes so the team came up with a plan for the following day, this was to fit harder springs in the front forks and to lower the rear ride height so that the bike would be more stable under braking. During Saturday’s qualifying session the bike was working better but I still felt that it could be better under hard braking and I also wanted to stop it from backing in going into Edwina’s, this was sorted after a lot of hard work from my team and by morning warm up the whole package felt much better. The boys had the chassis feeling perfect and with a new engine map installed I felt ready to improve on my qualifying position of P21, throughout my qualifying session I maintained a strong pace and my times were consistent so I knew that I would improve in the races.

After a rider crashed going into turn 1 it created a huge gap up to the leading pack and it left me again with a lot of work to do to fight for a point scoring position but I got my head down and pushed all the way, on lap 23 I set my fastest lap time and this was quicker than my qualifying time so I quickly reeled in the 2 riders ahead and crossed the line in 14th position and bagged 2 points for the Co-ordit race team.

Race 2 was a little more intense as it was declared a wet race but the conditions were quickly drying, then a last minute down pour left all of us feeling a little unsure about our choice of tyres. The first 5 laps I struggled to feel the grip and get heat into my intermediate front and slick rear, this left me so far behind the pack that my race was pretty much done already, I eventually got to grips with the conditions and steadily worked my way back through the pack. By the end of the race I was running similar times to the leaders but ended in 18th position.

A big thanks to all of my team members who were very patient this weekend while I found a good setting on my always fast R1!




20 July Oulton Park

After Mallory Park my team hoped to plan a test so that we could work on the bikes handling characteristics under braking and generally get some more saddle time for me, but with the weather being as it is at the moment we decided against it and I opted to play on my new Aprilia supermoto to get physically and mentally ready because when it comes to racing Superbikes then there is no where better or tougher than Oulton Park, it is fast, flowing and there is plenty of overtaking opportunities for the races.

Friday practice went pretty good for me and without changing too much on the bike I just worked on my weakest point on the circuit which was braking in to Island bend and getting through Foulstons chicane. I finished the day in a disappointing 19th but I knew that with a few minor tweaks then I could very easily be racing for points and yet again I was desperate for at least a 4th row start. Saturday practice was held in full wet conditions so it was a good chance for me to try some different settings on my bike, since Thruxton we have never tried a full wet set-up so I tried softer springs and damping on both the front forks and rear shock and after only 6 laps I was on the pace and happy for a wet race. Afternoon ‘roll for poll’ started out damp but by mid session the lap times had dropped and everyone was pushing hard, for the whole session I was top 15 and with 10 minutes to go I pitted for a new tyre so that I could push for a 3rd row start as my bike felt really good thanks to some tips from Ian at Rob Mac racing. Unfortunately as I got my head down for 2 flying laps my bike started to misfire and I was forced back to the pit box and with no time left to get out on the other bike I dropped to 19th position and I was very unhappy not to be in the top 15 again.

Race 1 started out to be a disaster, I was so cautious about the damp patches on the track that I dropped pretty much back to last place and after lap 2 I was so far behind that I had to really dig deep to get through the field and work my way back up the pack. Once I found my rhythm I think I made a pass at every possible point on the track and on the last lap I managed to get up to 14th position and despite being mad with myself for a terrible start it was nice to give team Co-ordit some more points.

Race 2 had to start better and after some time for reflection back at the motorhome and a really handy tip from my brother I just focused on gaining rather than losing positions at the start. By the time I was running in to Island bend I had moved in to 16th place and from then on I had a race long battle with James Haydon for the final point scoring finish, on lap 4 I set my personal best time of 1.38.2 and with 4 laps left I had pulled a 3 second gap on Haydon but with the rear tyre starting to lose grip I was finding it hard to maintain the 1.38’s falling back into the hands of James Haydon and he crossed the finish line just one tenth of a second in front of me knocking me back to 16th position.

It was a shame that I missed out on another points finish but it was still a good weekend all round with the team working faultlessly and the Rob Mac pro-ride programme is really working for Co-ordit.




10 August Knockhill

The 3 week break in between Oulton Park and Knockhill was a long drag for me, however, I got in plenty of cycling and I really got some use out of the J&L Aprilia but what I wanted most was to get back on track with my Co-ordit racing Yamaha and carry on the the good form from Oulton Park.

I have always enjoyed the race weekends at Knockhill, it’s quite a physical track but the weather makes it more unique than any other UK circuit and that means you need your finger on the pulse for tyre changes and tactical decisions that could be the difference between the front of the pack or the back.

Friday practice went well and after almost 100 laps of the 1.2 mile circuit we had tried all of the tyres we wanted, various suspension settings and even 2 different fuel maps to help with driving out of the slow hairpin, the day finished in 17th position but it was very very close.

Saturday was a tough day for everybody, it started wet and stayed wet right into the evening so there was no hiding from it. During the first session I was running in the top 10 until another rider sat up in front of me and I had to take avoiding action which sent me into a highside. I did manage to get back out for the last 5 minutes on my spare bike and still finished the session in the top 20.

Qualifying started well for me and straight away I settled into 12th position, after around 15 minutes I pitted for a set of fresh tyres so that I could push to stay in the top 12. After exiting pit lane an electrical gremlin stopped my bike and I was stranded half way around the track and that was my session over, when I returned to the garage I had fallen to 18th and then by the session end I had dropped to 25th.

On race day it looked like the weather could play a big part in the end result and it did! Both bikes were back and running well and Race 1 was declared dry so we ran slicks front and rear. From the start it was very difficult to make a pass because the dry line was still quite narrow but I started to pick my way through the pack, this was cut short with a bike problem and I was forced to retire from the race on lap 3.

Race 2 was declared wet and again I started to make my way through the field but this time a red flag situation cut the race short and the re-start looked to be dryer. Unfortunately my wet tyres were no use on a dry track, I pushed as hard as I could and finished the race in 18th position.