Round four at Knockhill proved to be a tough one for SorryMate riders. Both Matt and Kurt Wigley as both suffered injuries that significantly hampered their progress.
Matt, unfortunately, broke two vertebrae
Matt was unable to race after breaking two vertebrae during qualifying. Furthermore, Kurt battled on with muscular and tissue damage from a crash in FP2. This happened despite scoring three points in a courageous 13th place finish. The team enjoyed a hugely successful 2016 at the circuit. It started with a first and second row start for the pair and a maiden pole position in the series.
This year’s luck seems to have run out
However, this year’s fortunes were in complete contrast to the last. Kurt had an awful high side attempt that forced him off the track and into the gravel. This, unfortunately, happened during the first practice session to set the tone for the weekend.
In addition to this, Matt found the opening session equally as tricky. He saw that the 1000cc bike was much less suited to the tight, twisty and bumpy course, ending in a lowly 30th position.
Kurt struggled to gain stability
Kurt was much improved for FP2. He even posted the second fastest time in the first sector. However, also though a top-five finish was looking like a distinct possibility, he failed to complete his flying lap. This occurred after losing the front on a high speed right turn and crashed out for a second time.
This incident resulted in a red flag as Kurt struggled to gain stability in his legs. This was due to substantial damage to his lower back. Fortunately, further assessments in the ambulance showed that nothing was broken.
Matt began to build confidence
Another red flag cut short FP2 in the Superstock 1000 class. However. Matt started to gain some confidence in the bike during qualifying as he rode among a fast group of riders. As a result, he knocked 2.6 seconds off his practice personal best.
But having worked his way to 22nd on the grid, Matt suffered a horrific crash. He collided with the fence entering the final turn at high speed that provoked yet another red flag. Unlike Kurt, investigations at the local hospital confirmed that Matt had sustained significant damage that would prevent him from taking part in the race.
Kurt placed 14th on the grid
So it was left to Kurt in the Supersport class to salvage the weekend, but it required a great deal of resolve and determination with his FP2 injuries restricting his ability to walk. In a tremendous effort, Kurt placed 14th on the grid and despite a slow start to the race that dropped him down the order, he launched his way back up to a respectable 13th to seal a second consecutive points finish, taking his tally to nine for the season.