WATERS BROTHERS STAR IN QUEENSLAND SBK
Team Suzuki's Josh Waters has extended his lead in the Australian Superbike Championship's fifth round at Queensland Raceway at the weekend aboard the 2012-model GSX-R1000.
Waters finished third overall in the Superbike ranks following a weekend of mixed weather conditions, while younger brother Brodie Waters captured his first Australian Supersport Championship victory of the season on the 2012 GSX-R600.
The Superbike class saw Josh Waters (pictured) finish with a consistent performance of 2-4 finishes in the pair of 17-lap races, stretching his series lead to a commanding 30.5 points with two rounds remaining. Waters was top finisher on wet tyres in race one as Racer's Edge Performance Suzuki privateer Scott Charlton raced to a popular win when he gambled to start from pit lane on dry weather slicks, before backing that result up with a fighting fourth in race two.
"The first race was good when I finished second and the first bike on wets, but Scotty outsmarted us there!" Waters reflected. "I think it was his experience that got him over the line there, but he also didn't have anything to risk really.
"In the second race I felt good in the dry, but I was struggling to pull up under brakes from the start, so I just had to be smart to do what I could do. We have a bit of a break now and the Suzuka 8 Hour is coming up, so hopefully I can gain momentum from that."
Waters' team mate Ben Attard was a fine fifth overall in his home round, claiming fourth in race one and fifth in race two despite an off-track excursion while battling amongst the top positions. It was an improved performance from Attard, which will serve as a confidence-boost ahead of the final rounds.
"I guess the result isn't great, but we still battled up the front," said Attard. "We went in three-deep for the left-hander and Glenn Allerton had a moment, so that pushed me off the track. I felt like I could have maybe got second, but to come from Phillip Island battling for eighth, to come here and be up front was positive. I'm happy with the way things are going at the moment, so we'll keep moving forward."
Queenslander Robbie Bugden made the perfect start to the weekend by clinching his first career Pole on Saturday after Superpole was cancelled. Bugden also went off track during race day in the opening leg before recovering to eighth, and then finished a satisfying third in race two.
"I gave Jamie Stauffer a bit of room to move in race two, but it was a bit frustrating because I felt I had a bit more speed than what I was showing," said Bugden. "Once I got a clear track the tyre started going off a bit then I had a battle with Glenn Allerton at the end. The whole Volvo Group Suzuki team has been working hard and I can't wait for Phillip Island."
Charlton's impressive win and a sixth place in race two sealed him second overall for the weekend, making it two GSX-R1000s on the overall podium alongside Waters. Cube Racing Suzuki's Ben Henry finished eighth overall in Queensland.
The Supersport round was won by Brodie Waters, placing him right back in title contention just 12.5 points from the lead. Waters worked his way to a third-placed finish in race one after qualifying seventh and then won the second race of the weekend despite being involved in an incident that forced the race stoppage.
Waters was chasing down race leader Glenn Scott when the latter fell, leaving Waters with nowhere to go and taking him down in the process. Since Scott's crash was the initial cause of the red flag, Waters was awarded the victory when officials wound the race back to the running order before the incident - minus Scott as he was the cause of the red flag.
"I knew as soon as I saw Glenn in Turn Three on the first lap of race one I knew the gap he had on us was nearly unrealistic to catch from where I started," Waters said. "I just wanted to work into it and not rush things, but it ended up an okay race for me in third.
"In race two my start was better and we were up there straight away. Glenn got away a little bit but then we closed him back down and put 1.8 seconds on him to catch up. When I caught him he must have hit a wet patch and tucked the front and I had nowhere to go but over the top of him.
"It was a bad way to end, but we still managed to get the round win and that's a great result for Team Suzuki. From this point I just need to maintain focus and I really feel like my time on the Superbike at the 2+4 rounds has helped me improve back on the Supersport bike."
Suzuki also maintains the lead in the Australian Prostock Championship, run in conjunction with the Superbikes; as Chas Hern claimed his second round win in succession. Hern now has a buffer of 13 points with two rounds remaining.
The Australian Superbike Championship will now engage in a mid-season break for the next two months before resuming at the penultimate round on August 17-19th at Phillip Island in Victoria.
Superbike Round Results:
1. Jamie STAUFFER 43 2. Scott CHARLTON (Racer's Edge Performance Suzuki) 40 3. Joshua WATERS (Team Suzuki) 37 4. Glenn ALLERTON 35 5. Ben ATTARD (Team Suzuki) 33 6. Robert BUGDEN (Team Volvo Group Suzuki) 32 7. Wayne MAXWELL 29 8. Ben HENRY (Cube Racing Suzuki) 28
Superbike Championship Standings (after 5 of 7 rounds):
1. Joshua WATERS (Team Suzuki) 207.5 2. Wayne MAXWELL 177 3. Jamie STAUFFER 164.5 4. Glenn ALLERTON 164 5. Robert BUGDEN (Team Volvo Group Suzuki) 1506. Ben ATTARD (Team Suzuki) 148.5 7. Ben HENRY (Cube Racing Suzuki) 134.5 8. Scott CHARLTON (Racer's Edge Performance Suzuki) 129 9. Brodie WATERS (Team Suzuki) 45 10. Chris TROUNSON 26
Supersport Round Results:
1. Brodie WATERS (Team Suzuki) 30.5 2. Josh HOOK 27 3. Glenn SCOTT 26 4. Brendan CLARKE 24.5 5. Chris QUINN 21 6. Jaden HASSAN 21 7. Mitchell CARR 20 8. Laurence GUDE (Gude Racing Suzuki) 17 9. Mitch LEVY (Racer's Edge Performance Suzuki) 16.5 10. Adam SENIOR 16
Supersport Championship Standings (after 3 of 5 rounds):
1. Mitchell CARR 103.5 2. Josh HOOK 99 3. Brodie WATERS (Team Suzuki) 91 4. Glenn SCOTT 89 5. Chris QUINN 77.5 6. Levi DAY (Suzuki) 66 7. Adam SENIOR 60.5 8. Christan CASELLA 49.5 9. Mitch LEVY (Racer's Edge Performance Suzuki) 39.5 10. Anthony QUINN 37.5