Brookes takes new R1 to first BSB pole

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Josh Brookes has taken the new Yamaha R1 to it’s first MCE British Superbike pole position, topping the time sheets at Oulton Park ahead of a surprise front row of Tommy Bridewell and Stuart Easton.

“It felt like quite a clean lap in Q3, so I was happy considering the conditions were changing. These guys are all so close – it was point nothing in it and it is obviously going to be really close in the races too as all of us on the front row can do the lap times and Shakey and Kiyo won’t just disappear, so it is going to be as I predicted – a good few of us in for the battle.”

Brookes wasn’t quite able to match his testing time from last week, but still went under the lap record to finish the session on a 1:34.946 lap, only 0.014 ahead of the Tyco BMW of Bridewell in second.

Bridewell, finally finding good form after a slow start to the season on the new S1000RR, was only 0.06 ahead of Easton, who managed to squeeze his PBM Kawasaki teammate Shane Byrne back to fifth, behind fellow former champion Ryuichi Kiyonari.

James Ellison, struggling to find a comfortable base setting on the JG Speedfit Kawasaki, rounded out the second row. An excellent ride from Honda Racing’s Jason O’Halloran despite a huge moment in Q3 left him in seventh, ahead of the second Tyco BMW of Michael Laverty and Danny Buchan on the Be Wiser Kawasaki. Smiths BMW rider Billy McConnell rounded out the top ten.

Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer