Martin Jessopp still keen to go one better after Macau GP podium
Martin Jessopp accepted he may have to be patient to register his first ever Macau GP win but still has to pinch himself after coming second.
The Yeovil rider was unable to prevent former British Superbikes team-mate Michael Rutter from earning a record-setting eighth victory in the world’s most dangerous road race on Sunday.
However, Jessopp admitted there was no discredit in being beaten by the best competitor to tackle the Chinese administrative island circuit and said his personal best could be yet to come.
“I went there wanting to win”, said the 27-year-old. “Every time I look at the social networks I see loads of congratulatory messages and they point out that I beat the top road racing guys, which is true. I sometimes have to pinch myself with what I have done.
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“I have gone to the other side of the world for the world’s most dangerous race and come second again. I finished second to the best rider that has ever been to Macau so it is just my luck that I have met him.
“But I have got probably ten more years of going back there if I want to so hopefully I will be clocking up some wins.”
Jessopp gambled with tyre choice in both qualifying and the race but whereas he still started the rain-shortened event on the front row, a poor start meant a softer tyre proved ineffective.
The Riders Ducati man said: “I fluffed the start and the bike died, with people then flying past me. It took me four laps to get back up there, putting some hard moves in.
“Because it was a wet race it was shortened to ten laps like last year and we knew that Michael Rutter would be have a good start and lead. We gambled on a softer tyre that would work better at the start with the aim of getting a lead to put pressure on him.
“That wasn’t to be the case with my dreadful start and it only started to work really well once I had got up to second.
“From there I managed to keep the hammer down and was taking a second out of Michael every lap, getting it down to four seconds. But the tyre wear was getting worse and whereas Michael was on the hard tyre his set-up kept working for him.”
Jessopp - who came second in Macau in 2011 - will now turn attentions to sealing a ride for next year. After a summer plagued by injury and misfortune in the World Supersport series, Jessopp confirmed he will definitely be leaving 600cc bikes to return to a more familiar 1000cc superbike.
However, work still needs to be completed before he can reveal exactly what competition he will be entering as he heads for the closed season with doubt surrounding his future for the first time in his career.
Jessopp said: “It is good that we can now focus on what we are going to do for next year as Macau has taken up a lot of time. We can seriously look into next season now. With not much racing at the minute and all the series finishing, Macau was the last big race and the one that everybody will be talking about at the minute.
“We have been talking about it and we are just working hard now. We are not sure what championship we are going to be in, all we do know is that we are going to be on a superbike.
“We are pretty sure we know what manufacturer we will be on but we cannot reveal that until we know where we are going to be racing. There are options on the table.”