News 30 Aug 2023

'Just by trying hard doesn’t bring the results' – Brookes

An 8-8-8 scorecard for FHO BMW racer at Cadwell Park.

Image: Supplied.

There was no lack of effort from FHO Racing BMW’s Josh Brookes at Cadwell Park, but completing the eighth round of the 2023 British Superbike Championship (BSB) with an 8-8-8 scorecard, the Australian underlines ‘just by trying hard doesn’t bring the results’.

Brookes showed strong pace during the wet FP2 session to top the timesheets, but on dry track conditions in superpole he found himself 10th fastest and on the third row of the grid ahead of the sprint race.

The number 25 didn’t have a great grid position for each outing, which at a track like Cadwell Park made it difficult to progress forward in the races, ultimately finishing eighth in each of the outings despite trying his hardest.

“8-8-8 at Cadwell Park,” Brookes shared. “It’s been a far more challenging weekend than anyone thought. On Saturday the times were quite competitive and fairly strong, there had been some rain and we topped the times in a session, which was positive, but we struggled to improve on that and in fact, it was difficult to match the previous set times.

“The results we had over the weekend were okay, but as we couldn’t get a faster lap time our position was poor on the grid each time which makes it even more difficult at a track like Cadwell.

“I’m trying my hardest, I can assure everyone in the team are working hard, but just by trying hard doesn’t bring the results we know we are capable of at the moment. We tried something different for the last race, and I was a lot closer for the earlier laps and didn’t drop as far as I had in the previous races, so I feel like there were some positives there. The changes we made didn’t cure my problems, but it was a good step in the right direction.

“Next we head to Oulton Park for the ‘showdown’ part of the season. There’s a new points format for these next three rounds and we had some success earlier in the year at Oulton, so we hope to turn our fortunes around there.”

Cadwell Park marked the end of the regular part of the BSB season, with the showdown phase commencing at Oulton. New for 2023, there will no longer be eight riders that qualify or podium credits, and points will not be adjusted at the end of the main season.

Instead, everyone’s points will roll over into the showdown phase, with the points value per race to increase to 25-22-20-18-16-14-12-10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 for Oulton Park and Donington Park, then increase again for the season finals at Brands Hatch to 35-30-27-24-22-20-18-16-14-12-10-8-6-4-2.

Brookes is currently seventh in the championship standings, 101 points from series leader Tommy Bridewell (BeerMonster Ducati). The next round takes place at Oulton Park between 15-17 September, a venue where Brookes won a race earlier in the season.