Team Suzuki Press Office – March 29. Tyco Suzuki has completed its final British Superbike pre-season shakedown test at the Kirkistown circuit in County Down with both Alastair Seeley and Josh Brookes using the session to iron out any set-up issues from last week’s official tests at Brands Hatch and Snetterton
With the opening round of the BSB series at Brands Hatch in Kent next weekend, both men lapped well-inside the circuit lap record on numerous occasions on their Tyco Suzuki GSX-R1000 Superbikes: both posting regular 54.3 and 54.4-second laps.
The team had an open pit lane and sole use of the circuit until 2pm and both riders ended the morning session with a race simulation and positive feedback at both corners of TAS Racing garage.
Seeley was happy to finish up mid afternoon but Brookes – looking relaxed and content in his new set-up with Crew Chief Stewart Johnstone and Mark McCarville – decided to stay on until 6pm, lodging over 80 laps.
“If you added it all up today I think we did quite a number of laps. I decided to stay on as the weather was perfect and there are always things you can try. We ran through a number of set-ups and put down some decent lap times, which were pretty steady and consistent. I’m 100 per cent happy with my side of the garage and I know with a bit of time, things will get even better. Last week there were some general things I wasn’t happy with but going to Kirkistown worked out well. As I always say, it’s better to ride anywhere than not at all. Yeah it was a good day.”
“I was happy with the race simulation we did, posting consistent lap times with the fastest lap of 54.3 coming at a time when the tyre would certainly not have been at its best – so that’s confidence inspiring. We’re certainly going in the right direct. Yes we still have a bit to do, but you couldn’t post consistent 54-second times if the bike wasn’t working well. We’ve matched last year’s time that we did on the Superbike with all the electronic aids, so that’s also a positive. We also had a new motor in today which was smooth and not aggressive and is to my liking, although it still has plenty of power. Everyone is singing off the same hymn sheet, so we’ve gelled well. Hopefully we can hit the ground running at Brands next week.”
Philip Neill – Team Manager:
“Today worked out well for us and it was a great end to pre-season testing. Hopefully it puts us in a good strong position with some high hopes going into the opening weekend at Brands. We’ve had a lot of changes during the off-season and the boys have put in a major amount of hard work in every department, so I’m really pleased to see it paying off. Alastair was his usual brilliant self at Kirkistown, but it must be said, Josh went well inside his best ever times today and matched Alastair; it was all very pleasing. If we are honest, no one knew what the BSB rule changes would bring, taking away traction control, anti-wheelie and the likes of the kicker system. It’s not all about lap times on days like this but to match the best times we’ve ever posted around Kirkistown certainly tells us we’re in the ballpark. The race simulations to analyse tyre wear also threw up favourable results.”