BSB: Quick Irwin looking for qualifying improvements

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Glenn Irwin heads in to this weekend’s third round of the 2018 Bennetts British Superbike Championship booming with confidence after topping Thursday’s official test session at Oulton Park. 

The Ulsterman was 0.2 seconds underneath Josh Brookes’ circuit lap record to top the pile after heading up all three superbike sessions in the one-day official test. 

Irwin, who sits fourth in the championship after a solid start to the year including a podium last time out at Brands Hatch, found an improved feeling with his Be Wiser Ducati from the new 2018-spec soft Pirelli rear tyre. 

Having previously tried the new rubber in pre-season testing, Irwin was relieved to find he had a similar feeling on the UK’s tracks as the tyre comes in to play for the first time at Oulton Park this weekend. 

“I’m really liking the new softer rear,” he told MCN. “I liked it when we tried it at Monteblanco and it’s given me a good feeling here too.

 “We haven’t had a bad start to the year, but qualifying has let us down. We’ve had some good results but they’ve always been from lowly grid positions. I’m quick enough to be on the podium, so without having to get through from down the grid I should be able to fight at the front.” 

Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

Former sports reporter covering British Superbikes, World Superbikes and road racing