MOTORSPORT: Test of endurance for racer Railton on world stage
- Credit: Archant
Jon Railton is in it for the long haul!
The Great Paxton rider is tackling some of the toughest races in the world as part of the new British Endurance Racing Team - which he formed along with his father and former racer, Dave.
The Alconbury-based operation is competing in the FIM World Endurance Championship where events can last up to 24 hours.
Railton and fellow riders Johnny Blackshaw and Dave Ferns had their first outing recently in the Bol D'or at the Paul Ricard circuit in France.
They qualified 43rd out of 56 competing teams aboard their Suzuki GSX-R 1000 machine and were soon climbing through the pack as the race began in wet conditions on the Saturday afternoon.
But it was then deemed too treacherous to continue, with the event being suspended through the night before resuming early on the Sunday morning.
The British Endurance Racing Team continued their rise with Blackshaw moving up to 33rd position before Railton took over, but the local man found himself on the deck after being hit by a rival rider.
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While he escaped unscathed, the bike suffered considerable damage and required around 30 minutes of urgent repairs in the pits before they could return to the track.
The action was then held up again by a major spill involving the leading three teams which led to their bikes and part of the tyre barrier catching fire!
Once back under way, Railton and co made it safely to the finish exactly where they started in 42nd place.
"My father and I formed the team last year and have worked towards getting a permanent entry into the FIM World Endurance Championship ever since," said Railton.
"It wasn't really the result we were looking to get in the first round as we felt we could challenge for a finish in the top 20, but it didn't quite happen for us.
"It wasn't the 24-hour race we were expecting either, but it was great to get out on the track and be part of this series."
The British Endurance Team face a pre-Christmas trek to Malaysia for the second round of the FIM World Endurance Championship as they take part in the Eight Hours of Sepang event.
The three remaining rounds - at the famous Le Mans in France, Oschersleben in Germany and Suzuka in Japan - then take place during next year.
The British Endurance Racing Team are being supported by In Balance Family Chiropractic who look after their riders during races.