Team Suzuki Press Office – March 23.

Reigning Australian Superbike Champion Josh Waters is currently challenging for the lead in the 2018 series after two rounds. Here, the 31-year-old former British Superbike rider and popular Suzuka 8-Hour World Endurance regular in the Yoshimura Suzuki team reflects on his special opportunity to ride the Team SUZUKI ECSTAR GSX-RR MotoGP machine earlier this year in Sepang, Malaysia; along with the opening races in Australian Superbikes.

“At the start of December last year, I received a phone call from Paul Vandenberg, Suzuki Australia's General Manger, with some 'pretty exciting news’ that I was getting a chance to ride the new Team SUZUKI ECSTAR MotoGP bike as a reward from Suzuki Motor Corporation in Japan for winning the 2017 Australian Superbike Championship. I couldn't believe it, as this for me was a dream. And it came true!

“My experience was awesome. I got to ride the bike at the Sepang Circuit in Malaysia at the end of January. It was all planned-out that I got to have two half-hour sessions. I was so nervous thinking of all these things of what the bike would be like to ride, but I was shocked on how nice it was to ride. I was blown away though by the acceleration and the stopping power. Amazing - a lot more physical than any other motorcycle I've ever ridden.

“Straight after my dream ride I was back to work and getting ready to try and win the 2018 Australian Superbike Championship. This year our Championship has grown again, with 50 entries at Round 1 in the Superbike class. The competition this year again is very strong. As everyone would probably know, Troy Bayliss has come out of retirement this year and I'm sure he will be very strong.

“Round 1 at Phillip Island for me wasn't too bad. I qualified in Pole Position and finished all three races on the podium, within a second off the win. I was happy to be fighting for the wins but of course it's a better feeling when you do win.

“Round 2 has just been held at a very-different circuit to the opening round at Phillip Island - a circuit called Wakefield Park. It’s a very English-type track. Again, I was happy with how I rode, qualifying on the front row in third and placing third in both races.

“I'm happy to have finished on the podium in all of my races so far this year, and now I'm sitting second in the championship. My next round is at a brand-new circuit (The Bend Motorsport Park) next month, which I'm really looking forward to. This circuit is just over three hours from me, so it's like my new ‘home track’ as it's the closest track to home, so it would be great to win in front of my family and friends there.

"Until then I'll just be keeping busy riding my Suzuki RM-Z and DR-Z dirt bikes! I look forward to reporting back midway through the year and keeping everyone up-to-date with how I'm going."


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