TSR Issue 3 2017

JOSH WATERS BLOG “T he 2017 Australian Superbike series ended-up being like bit of a fairy tale for me. Like I said in my last blog in TSR Magazine, the plan came together very late to compete this year. Each round we improved and by round four we were on the pace, winning both races. The next two rounds were also very good for me taking wins, and come the final round, I had a real chance of winning the championship. “The weekend of the final round started good for me; in the top-three in practice and qualifying. There were three of us that could have won the ASBK Championship, so come Sunday morning the pressure I had on myself was quite high. To make me even more nervous, in normal Phillip Island-style it decided to rain about an hour before the race. Half an hour later though the sun was out and but was very windy, so there was a chance it would dry-out come race-time. Sitting on the grid after the sighting lap I said to my crew chief, Phil Tainton (the man who took me to my two previous championships) that ‘it was still dodgy on the final bit of the circuit.’ He said to me, ‘you know what to do, just don’t leave today wishing you’d done this or you’d done that. You’ll be disappointed.’ “I got a great start and in the first two laps I had a three-second lead and that was the race that helped me win the championship. For race two I knew where I had to finish – a top-five would clinch the championship. I came fifth and that was enough to become the 2017 ASBK Champion. It was such a special feeling crossing the line and then coming into the pit and seeing the team, family and friends. “Two weeks later was my final race of the year in the support races at the Australian MotoGP™ at Phillip Island. The weekend went almost perfectly; I was fastest in practice and qualifying. I then went on to win three of the four races then in the final race I chose dry tyres and it rained! My mistake but I was still able to win the weekend and I was so happy with how it went. “A week or so after my final race I was interviewed for one of the biggest motorcycling magazines here in Australia. He said to me that back before round four of the championship he laughed to himself when asking me if I still had a chance of winning the championship this year. I said ‘yes, it’s racing, anything can happen. I was so lucky that the new Suzuki GSX-R1000 was so good here in Australia and I had an awesome team behind me. “With New Year coming-up fast my new DRZ125 off-road Suzukis will be doing lots of laps around my dirt track at home. This year’s Christmas visitors are our good friends, the Mackenzie family from the UK. They are like family to us - until we hit the dirt track and then it gets serious! I really look forward to riding and training with Niall, Taylor and Taz. Also, my local town is on a fresh water river so I’m sure we will spend lots of time down there skiing and enjoying the Australian Summer. “I also look forward to reporting back early next year once I start riding again, but I’d like to thank everyone for the support that we’ve had this year.” ‘I was so lucky that the new Suzuki GSX-R1000 was so good here in Australia and I had an awesome team behind me,’ says Josh Waters after a late plan came together to test the water in the 2017 Australian Superbike Championship aboard the new GSX-R1000. 2017 Issue #3 - Winter TEAM SUZUKI RACING news 16 Never give up: never surrender