When Josh Brookes signed for the Anvil Hire TAG Yamaha team at the start of the year, no-one was sure whether the unproven team would be able to put together a package good enough for the 2015 British Champion.
With the Swadlincote-based team having scored just three points last year, they would have to up their game to provide Brookes’ with a package to fight at the front and while it’s not been an easy start to the season, their progress was evident at Snetterton this weekend as they fought to two well-earned runner-up spots last time out at Snetterton.
And while Brookes admits he was unable to fight with Byrne for the win, he was able to get close to the dominant Ducati’s pace which he believes bodes well for the future with more to come from both him and the YZF-R1.
“Results don’t always tell the full story,” said a philosophical Brookes after the second race. “I know you can only pass judgement on results but there’s sometimes so much more behind it.
“I’ve had weekends where the results haven’t been right, but we’ve made a clear step forward. That kind of sums up our start to the year really, I’ve been happy each weekend even though the results haven’t been anything to shout about.
From the start of the year, Brookes had one clear goal – to return to the feeling he had with the Yamaha YZF-R1 when he dominated the 2015 championship and even after this weekend’s result, he feels he’s not quite there just yet.
“At the moment, 2015 is the benchmark of what is possible with me and the bike and I believe we are just below that ceiling at the moment. What I hope to do us reach that point and then progress further. From the start of the year we set out to progress and we have, we’ve made the podium now. I know we were on the podium at Donington but I put that down to experience and others having typical ‘first round’ issues.”
“As everyone moved into their more comfortable zone, where we were at started to show and I had to wait for the other pieces to fall into place. I can’t force that, but now I feel we’re making those steps forward and there’s even more to come.”
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