Sunday, 10 September 2017

Q&A with Lee Jackson

Early this week I caught up with Lee Jackson Jnr, Lee took his first BSB podium a few weeks ago at Cadwell Park, adding more success to the Jackson family racing honors list. His uncle, Lee Snr a former National Superstock champion and Factory Kawasaki rider. While his Dad Gary was also handy in his time.

So Lee how did it feel to finally get that BSB podium? And at Cadwell too?

Hi Andy, yeah to finally get that first BSB podium was fantastic, at the time I was so happy about getting a podium, I just wanted to get back to the pits to see all my family and team but now I just wish I took my time on the cooling down lap and took it in. Especially being at my local track, so many familiar faces there, all my supporters, friends, family and of course Sponsors came out to watch so it was nice to show them why they have stuck by me through the years. The feeling was amazing, the Sunday night went so quick and replying to so many people was so nice and also the types of people saying Well done was also nice, it was a great day and hopefully it doesn't take too long to repeat it.

What has been the changing factor over recent rounds. And how did you keep your head up like you did to bounce back in what was a challenging start to the season?

Yes, you summed it up really the first half of the season was very challenging and difficult, firstly changing to a new Team was going to be different for me, but having two big crashes at round 1 which put me on the sidelines was hard to take on board, but I had to keep my head, we kept chipping away round by round with the team trying to get the bike in the sweet spot for me and although it's a BMW it's a totally different bike to the one I rode last year at Hawk Racing. Over the last few rounds it's been getting closer and closer to where my last year's bike was and finally at Thruxton we managed to get inside the top 10 and finish 7th which was nice to do this coming into our home round at Cadwell. I go into each race weekend the same, but although my season has been difficult I felt something different about Cadwell and the whole weekend just worked, we chipped away session by session and come race day we were there right in the ball park and to have two strong finishes and my first BSB podium come the end of the day was fantastic and all Thanks to my Team for the hard work!

How does it help having a father and uncle who raced in the BSB paddock. Of course Lee was the National Superstock champion and had many races in Superbikes also?

Having my Dad and Uncle in my corner helps, it's just an instant confidence booster. For one I trust my dad with anything, he's always been around my racing and knows how to build a good race bike and same for my Uncle but obviously now they have taken a step back from building / working on my bikes they go off watching and spotting for me which is nice and helps me no end and can help me improve my riding and pick up things from other riders. Although recently both my Uncle and Dad have been floating in and out my SMITHS BMW garage helping the team understand and get the bike to where I'd like it which had been good as means there is 2 extra heads, eyes and hands in the garage

I first saw you race in the BSB paddock at the rearranged brands hatch meeting in 08 I think. 4 years later you won the Superstock 600 class and by 2015 you were a Superbike rider. That's some quick progression. I'm a firm believer that a rider can spend too long in a class, then either don't adapt or take longer to. Do you think the speed you progressed to BSB was beneficial to you?

Yes like you say my career has been quite quick up to now and only been in a class for a maximum of two years until as this is my 3rd season in British Superbikes. From 2011 to 2013 it all went so quick, from riding a Honda RS125 then onto the Superstock 600 which went from finishing last in the first race of the season to eventually winning the championship at the last round which then lead me into the Super stock 1000 class which went well in the first year and again in the 2nd year which helped me get a ride in the British Superbike championship. So I'd say the progression has been good and somewhat difficult at times, but I love the challenge and loved the change over on to the 1000cc bike and then of course now racing in the BSB class it's great and I'm still learning all the time.

So what is the goal for the rest of this year and into next season

For the rest of 2017 with 4 rounds to go, I'm looking now to be consistent in every race and hopefully be in the top 6 and fighting for the podiums now I've shown I can do it and I feel in myself I can do it and push on for more podiums. For 2018, I'm looking to be back in the BRITISH SUPERBIKE championship and fighting for the showdown as I feel we can do it more than ever now.

Be sure to follow Lee on Twitter

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