Having finished the 2017 season just seven points off eventual champion Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne, Josh Brookes is gunning to go one place better this year after a switch to the factory-supported McAMS Yamaha team.
The Aussie left it late to secure a deal last season, leaving him with limited options on the grid but a last-minute arrangement with the Anvil Hire TAG Racing squad saw Brookes return to BSB.
While the small, family-run and completely private outfit took giant steps forward as they looked to give the former champion a package to fight at the front, ultimately the limitations and disadvantages from being a smaller, private effort hampered Brookes in the fight against his factory-backed rivals.
However, with the McAMS Yamaha team wheeling out a World Superbike-spec YZF-R1 (minus electronics) for the 2015 champ, he should be in a much-improved position to challenge Byrne and Haslam for the top spot.
“Last year the whole concept of what I did was based on the theory of self-belief,” Brookes told MCN. “The bike definitely wasn’t the best on the grid, but we were able to achieve what we did with it because we believed in what we could do and made the best of what we had. The materials available to the McAMS team are much better and the preparation of the team is also superior to what I was on last year, so if I can do what I was doing last season in that situation, I will be stronger and be able to do better this year."
“The whole point in me changing teams was to find greener pastures, and after testing, I believe that will be the case. We won the odd race last year, but it needs to be more consistent and I’m hoping that’s what we will be able to achieve with the McAMS team."
For an extensive 2018 Bennetts British Superbike Championship season preview, including exclusive interviews, tech features and the Bennetts BSB grid predicting their 2018 #ShowdownSix, pick up this week's MCN.