Tommy Bridewell kicked off 2023 Bennetts British Superbike preparations narrowly behind new PBM Ducati teammate Glenn Irwin in the Navarra test.
The Panigale pairing sat third and fourth in the combined times after three days on track in Northern Spain. The Wiltshire rider having set a 1’38.830 best to round out the final day’s top three, with Irwin beating him to the overall position by less than two tenths of a second thanks to the previous afternoon’s efforts.
“It’s been good fun, actually,” Bridewell said trackside from the Navarra Circuit. “Obviously, I’m very familiar with the Ducati so I was confident I would be able to just immediately feel good on the bike but the ’23 bike is very different to what I expected, in a very positive way.
“It’s been a real learning curve,” he continued. “Really gelled with the team well - the PBM team have been really welcoming, which is nice.
“Because they’ve got such a strong pedigree as a team, there’s an element of pressure for me.
“I’m expected, I expect myself to be fast, to be strong, and to be flying the flag for PBM is an honour. I really, really enjoyed it. The team’s worked absolutely mega and like I say the ’23 bike is a lot, lot different so it’s nice to have that. Then it’s just understanding it.
“I think here we’ve worked really hard with a lot of stuff. Just to understand what it affects, in every area, under braking, under acceleration, under mid corner. All these areas is a lot of ‘right, five laps, try that, comeback, five laps, change it, five laps, come back’. It’s always a lot of work. So we’ve done a lot of laps, which is good.
“I feel ready to now go racing which is always nice. Looking forward to getting back to the UK. Getting back to the Donington tests in a couple of weeks and seeing how we fare up there.”