Top three share their thoughts ahead of The Bend 2023 decider.
Six rounds, 14 races completed so far in the 2023 Mi-Bike Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) and it all comes down to The Bend this weekend in South Australia. Penrite Honda Racing’s Troy Herfoss and Josh Waters (McMartin Racing Ducati) enter level on points, while Glenn Allerton (GT Racing Team) holds third in the standings. In this latest feature. CycleOnline speaks with the top three to get their Input ahead of on-track action in Tailem Bend.
Josh Waters (McMartin Racing Ducati) – First (293 points, seven race wins in 2023):
Going into the final round, in the position that I’m I’d be lying to say there’s not a lot going on in my head. To be in a position to fight for the championship, it’s a really good feeling. Weekend-wise, I look forward to riding the Ducati around there, I was fortunate enough to race there – unfortunately I got taken out in the second race in the first turn, but the first race was alright, I was close to the front. I look forward to it, I will try my hardest this weekend and that’s what it will be. The big thing with this circuit, the final round and stuff like that, there are a lot of people that go good at this track, also people will be digging in deep because it is the final race for the year. I just need to worry about myself and try and put myself in the best position in those two races.
Troy Herfoss (Penrite Honda Racing) – First (293 points, six race wins in 2023):
I’m in a good position. I’ve got a team around me that we all get along well, they respect my decision, Honda respects my decision, all our sponsors are supportive of my time that I have had with them and supportive of my decision. I just want to go out there and give them what they deserve, they deserve another championship, it has been a few years for me since I’ve sealed the deal. For me, it’s not really any different, it’s such a privilege to be in this position to race for a championship. I remember the feeling of racing against Mike [Jones] in 2019 and you just step up in these situations. I’m looking forward to that feeling you get when it is all on the line and it comes down to the last race of the year.
Glenn Allerton (GT Racing Team) – Third (226 points):
I want to finish the season with a strong result and get in the top three. Being mathematically not in a chance to win the title is really a bitter pill to swallow, but when you look at the big picture that Trevor and I built at the last minute and put together, to be in a position that we are at the moment, we have got to be proud of what we achieved. The job is not finished and I want to try to get a win before the season is out, it’s been a good track to me over the years and I have been close to victory a couple of times here. The goal is to win a race and secure third in that championship. We did go and do a test there and unfortunately, I had a big crash in the second session, and I wasn’t able to really complete any running on a new tyre. I was just getting my head around the track and had a high-side in the second-last corner and landed pretty hard on my lower back. To be honest I have been pretty sore, it’s been a bit of a recovery, but just in the last few days I have come good and I am back into training and I feel good now. Going to the race, a week ago, I wasn’t feeling super confident that I was going to be able to attack the weekend because my body was really sore, but yeah in the last couple of days I’ve just come good and I feel really good. We’ve been building towards winning a race, and I feel like this track offers us a really good opportunity to do that. I feel like this Tailem Bend track suits our motorbike, being a European, flowing, wide circuit. If we get into a situation where we can use a little bit softer tyres, like the medium, or even the ‘X’ for the weekend, that suits us even better. The higher grip tyre that we can use, the better we seem to run. I’m optimistic that we can finish the season on a high. I’m not really concerned about how the championship is playing out for the other two to be honest with you, they are both obviously going to be racing to win the championship and they are not going to want anyone to get involved, but I am racing to win for my team and everybody who puts the effort in for me. They want to see me on the top step and I’m going to give it everything I can to get there.