Just a day after taking victory in the second race of the day at Cadwell Park, Josh Brookes and the HM Plant Honda team were back on track at Assen today (Tuesday), testing alongside the Hannspree Ten Kate Honda squad in preparation for the Showdown.
Brookes is currently one point adrift of joint championship leaders Ryuichi Kiyonari and Worx Crescent Suzuki's Tommy Hill at the top of the standings, but the team wasted no time in the trying to gain the advantage ahead of the first round of the Showdown at Croft in less than two weeks' time. The team left Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire last night and headed overnight to the Dutch circuit ready to test alongside the Honda World Superbike Championship team with Brookes boosted by the extra time on track.
Brookes said: "Today went pretty good really; we were restricted with the weather to start with but when it dried up we got going and put in a decent number of laps. I was surprised initially how well the HM Plant Honda worked following Cadwell Park, considering how the transition from Snetterton to Silverstone was not so good for us. Assen is a fast, flowing circuit so I had prepared myself for the worst, thinking that the settings wouldn't work well there at all, but straight out it wasn't as bad as I thought it might be and we just made tweaks to improve throughout the afternoon. It was definitely beneficial for us and now we have to focus on Croft."
Team Manager Havier Beltran concluded: "It has been a valuable test for Josh and the HM Plant Honda team today. It rained this morning which meant we lost a bit of time but it dried up and Josh put in around 20 or 30 laps and we were able to work through various setting changes. We had problems at Silverstone when we were there for the World Superbike round so today has given us the chance to work on chassis setting on a similar track and we have come away with some good data to work with and have an improved base setting. The Ten Kate team offered us the chance to test alongside them and so we took them up on the opportunity and I think this will benefit us ahead of the final three rounds."
The next round of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship is the first round of the Showdown at Croft on 10/11/12 September. For more information visit www.croftcircuit.co.uk or call 01325 721815.