Veteran Hong Kong racer consigns crash to the past and aims to corner superbike crown Long-time Hong Kong resident Nick Winthrope is aiming to put a recent mishap behind him as he competes in Open class one in the National Superbike race - a MotoGP support race - as one of the favourites. In the opening round of the China Super Bike Championship in Shanghai last month, Winthrope was forced to race on makeshift tyres - with near-disastrous consequences - after customs officals delayed the delivery of his regular tyres. 'Nick blew his tyres in the first race of the China Superbike Championship and crashed,' said Jimbo Dawson, fellow-racer and manager of their team, Wanch Racing. 'The tyres were destroyed but he was OK.' Dawson believes Winthrope, a 44-year-old Englishman, has what it takes to win. 'He's one of the most determined riders I have met. Nick might be getting on in years but he's still incredibly fit and in the last few years he has matured as a rider.' Winthrope has won the past two China Superbike titles to prove he's one of the leading bikers in Hong Kong and on the mainland. The series is currently led by Guangdong-born Huang Shizhao - but the mainlander will not be taking part in the support race as he has been given a wild card to compete in the 250cc grand prix. 'We're really looking forward to Shanghai,' said Dawson. 'It's very exciting to know that we will be racing in the support race for the MotoGP. It's being held for the first time in Shanghai and going by the Formula One crowd last year, the turnout will be incredible.' The support race is a one-off and does not carry points towards the China Superbike Championship. Winthrope said he found the circuit impressive and a joy to race on. 'I have raced in Shanghai before and I enjoyed racing on the track. It's very enjoyable. I just hope I don't have the same problems as I did last time,' said Winthrope, who helps run a motorcycle racing shop and teaches young mainlanders how to ride effectively in races in Zhuhai. 'I have now set up a business on the race track, creating Track Torque with my partner, Jimbo [Dawson]. I am here to win in Shanghai. The circuit is easy to learn and you can go really fast in some parts. It's a great circuit,' he said. In the support race, the bikes are divided into three classes but race together. Open class one is for fully modified bikes up to 1,000cc. Open class two is for modified bikes up to 750cc and the 600 SuperSport Class is for 600cc production bikes with limited modifications.