Brookes out for victory in Byrne's back yard

Author: Bike Social Sports Reporter Posted: 19 Apr 2014

Brookes is closing in on the lap record

Josh Brookes has said he’s looking to give Shane Byrne a run for his money at Brands Hatch this weekend after edging towards the fastest ever lap around Brands Hatch in this afternoon’s second British Superbike practice session.

Byrne has been almost untouchable through the British Superbike pre-season, coming to his home round on a high despite missing out on the title to Alex Lowes at the Kent circuit last year. Topping the official test day on Friday, Byrne then went on to top the first practice session of 2014 ahead of his Australian challenger.

Brookes however laid down the gauntlet in the second session, taking the lead from Byrne at around mid-distance before going faster and faster as the session went on. The twice BSB runner-up completed the session with a fastest lap of 45.505 seconds, just 0.4 outside Gregorio Lavilla’s longstanding lap record of 44.600 seconds, set back in 2007.

“I’m really pleased with how the afternoon has gone and we have had some good benefits across the day” said Brookes.

“The changes we have made have been good value for money in terms of paying off. I’ve been able to do good lap times on longer runs on an old tyre and I feel good about that.  They say that Shakey is the Master of Brands Hatch but I am ready to give him a run for his money now. We are ready for anything and today’s final laps nicely put a bow on the end of the sessions.”

Byrne wasn’t far off though, just 0.127 behind the Milwaukee Yamaha man with Jakub Smrz on the Millsport Ducati in third place.

However, with rain forecast for the next 24 hours, tomorrow could be a very different story.

FP1 Times:
1: Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) 45.576s
2: Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) +0.125s
3: Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) +0.497s
4: Chris Walker (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) +0.498s
5: Dan Linfoot (Quattro Plant Kawasaki) +0.500s
6: Jakub Smrz (Millsport Ducati) +0.586s
7: Stuart Easton (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki)
8: James Ellison (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) +0.667s
9: James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +0.673s
10: Martin Jessopp (RidersRacing BMW) +0.678s

FP2 Times:
1: Josh Brookes (Milwaukee Yamaha) 45.506s
2: Shane Byrne (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +0.171s
3: Jakub Smrz (Millsport Ducati) +0.262s
4: Stuart Easton (Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki) +0.296s
5: Chris Walker (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) +0.345s
6: James Ellison (Lloyds British GBmoto Racing Kawasaki) +0.520s
7: James Westmoreland (Buildbase BMW) +0.593s
8: Ryuichi Kiyonari (Buildbase BMW) +0.599s
9: Simon Andrews (RAF Reserves Honda) +0.611s
10: Martin Jessopp (RidersRacing BMW) +0.614s