Australia’s Josh Brookes believes any doubts that he and his team are capable of competing for podium spots in the World Superbike Championship should now be put to one side after he convincingly led the second race at Assen yesterday.
On a drying track, Brookes carved through the pack on his Milwaukee BMW after the team’s technicians found an electronic setting he was comfortable with and he was able to ride in the same fashion that took the Bringelly man to last year’s BSB crown.
Brookes hadn’t been happy with the S1000RR in Friday’s rain but chassis and electronic alterations saw a huge improvement during yesterday’s dry warm-up which also worked well in the wet second race.
“We’ve been making progress all weekend. When the rain first came down I was a little bit put off because we’d been fifth in morning warm-up in dry conditions, so when the rain started I was thinking this could be not so easy. As it was the changes we made to the bike during the weekend in the dry also made it better in the wet conditions, so I felt like I could go faster and I was thinking I need to move forward,” said Brookes, speaking at the track.
“I started making passes and it felt very easy. I was confident with the bike and the tyres and it felt natural to ride at that speed. To then lead the World Superbike race was a great feeling and I was really pleased. It was a great booster for everyone in the team. It was particularly satisfying because the first part of this year has been so tough for me and the team.
“Changing to the World Superbike Championship, changing to BMW motorcycles and then incorporating the BMW staff and electronics and all the things that come with WSBK it has actually been quite a big challenge. It has more time consuming to get the bike up to speed than anyone anticipated. We have lots of clever people, lots of experience but we didn’t have enough time pre-season. We have come from there and pushed our way to a position where we can show our capabilities. Any doubts about that should now be pushed aside.”