News 6 Feb 2019

ASBK return on the cards for Jones at Phillip Island opener

Complete plans for 2019 campaign not yet locked in for the former champion.

Image: Russell Colvin.

Former premier class champion Mike Jones has revealed he’ll make a return to the Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) at Phillip Island’s opening round on 21-24 February.

Jones been racing internationally for the past two seasons, most recently contesting the Spanish Superstock 1000 champion with Speed Racing Team Kawasaki, while also making a guest MotoGP appearance at the Island in 2018 with Angel Nieto Team.

The Queenslander was on-track at the weekend’s official ASBK test aboard a 2018 edition Kawasaki ZX-10RR, winding up 10th on the timesheets after laying down his best-time in the final session on Sunday afternoon.

Without any plans in place for the 2019 season, Jones says Phillip Island’s first stop is an opportunity to remain sharp on the motorcycle as he endeavours to lock down his program for the year, with hopes of remaining on the international circuit.

“I’ll be racing round one of the ASBK at Phillip Island,” Jones revealed to CycleOnline.com.au. “We were at the ASBK test to get some practice in and try to get myself up to speed in preparation for the event.

“It’s actually a 2018 Kawasaki ZX-10RR [that I’m riding] owned by K&R Hydraulics and Maverick Race Developments, it’s their bike and I’m just sort of borrowing it at the moment for the first round. The goal for me is to progress in my career, and to race overseas is that goal. Right now at the moment, I don’t have anything confirmed.

“So the idea is to race the first round to keep me in the seat and riding – keep the eye in – and we’ll see what comes of it. It was awesome [to be back] – I got to catch up with a lot of people and see some familiar faces. Obviously, the ASBK field is very competitive – it’s gotten a lot stronger in the couple of years that I’ve been overseas.

“It’s really good to come back and be in such a competitive field. It’s just awesome for Australia to have that level of competitiveness and I’m really looking forward to racing the guys at the first round.”

Round one of the ASBK will be held in conjunction with the FIM Motul Superbike World Championship (WorldSBK) opener.

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