Josh Brookes has blitzed another MCE British Superbike lap record in testing, with the Milwaukee Yamaha rider becoming the only rider ever to lap the new configuration at Snetterton faster than 1:47 during this week’s two-day test.
Working with major new development parts for the first time on the R1, a new fuel tank was one of the key factors in his increased pace – but he says a lot of it was down to a perfect alignment of factors.
"Yesterday was smoother than today as we were doing straightforward changes, apart from the new tank. Today we have been making changes to experiment with a few things, so it wasn't so straightforward for me and I was just a bit like a test pilot. As it turns out by what we testing here we were able to put a few little pieces together that were better than what we had previously, so when we went out on new tyres the bike had improved on what we had yesterday, so we could do a better lap time and make it into the 1:46s.
"I did a small run of five or six laps in the final session and they were all really fast and positive so that is good. We are pleased - it has been a perfect test in terms of what we have tested, the lap times, the tyre wear, and the conditions. I even had my first crash of the season, although it was a tiny little slip off at the hairpin to get that out of the way. It was a really valuable test for us as a team."
Reigning champion Shane Byrne and title leader, both over half a second down on Brookes, traded the runner-up spot for most of the final session of the day at the test, but it was Byrne who ultimately emerged on top.
Fourth was an impressive ride from Jakub Smrz on the Moto Rapido Ducati, while Broc Parkes improved his form to take the second Milwaukee Yamaha to fifth. Jason O’Halloran rounded out the top six on the Honda Racing bike.
- Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) 1:46.861
- Shane Byrne (PBM Kawasaki) +0.562s
- James Ellison (JG Speedfit Kawasaki) +0.580s
- Jakub Smrz (Moto Rapido Ducati) +0.644s
- Broc Parkes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +1.115s
- Jason O'Halloran (Honda Racing) +1.174s
- Chris Walker (Be Wiser Kawasaki) +1.796s
- Stuart Easton (PBM Kawasaki) +1.812s
- Danny Buchan (Be Wiser Kawasaki) +1.875s
- Christian Iddon (Bennetts Suzuki) +1.936s