Glenn Allerton swept to pole position under perfect sunny skies at Queensland Raceway today onboard the NextGen Motorsports BMW S 1000 RR. Coming back from knee surgery the Narellan (NSW) rider only needed to put in a four laps to claim pole position with a 69.06 scorcher. More than half a second quicker than the previous FX benchmark but nearly a full second slower than he has done before here with the BMW in the more open rule ASBK trim.
“We tried a few different springs, front and rear throughout the day looking for a setting that would work for us, trying to compensate for areas where I thought we might be able to make up time.
“But, it didn’t seem to help us anywhere and so for the qualifying session we put it back to the same set-up we used at the test here and to do those times they were not even especially good laps at all, the bike was just really smooth and easy to ride.
“In one of the sessions we just spent time concentrating on getting the set-up for the races, making sure our tyres would go the distance.
“I am not 100 per cent fit yet, and it still shows when I am riding and there are things that I still can’t do on the bike as I am not back to full strength. I find it really hard in the right hand corners with my knee to get back into the middle of the bike, release the brake and get on the throttle and shift a gear, so for us to be on pole is really good news and I am really excited about the race but it is not going to be easy.
“Jamie is really good around here and the Yamaha guys have got stronger so there are plenty of threats if we make any mistakes.
“The way this series is, with a control tyre that has to last all day, obviously it has to be a hard tyre and when you have a bike with as much power as we have with the BMW, you put a low grip tyre in it, it doesn’t gel, so the bike is suited to more grip so you actually use the extra power you have, if you can’t get off the corner, and I am struggling to get off the corner really well, you can’t take advantage of all that power we’ve got. I feel I am strong under brakes though, and always have been, I get on to the back straight really which helps, because my bike is fast. If you can get turn two right here you are in business, the double lefts are pretty important but you can get away with it if you are really good on to the back straight.
“Hopefully the weather doesn’t get too hot, it’s not going to be easy I feel like I am going to have to work harder than ever and with these short races there is no chance to sit in the pack and gauge the others, from the word go it’s all out.”
Second quickest was Team Honda Racing’s Jamie Stauffer. The Kurri Kurri veteran put in a 69.30 time on lap 8 of 13.
“We made progress throughout the day and have gone forward, we need to find a couple more tenths here and there we should be in a good position.
“We haven’t had any tyre problems so from that side of things we are right.
“Our strengths with the Fireblades is in the corners, and there aren’t many corners here (laughs), so it might be a little tough but we should still be in for some top results.”
Wayne Maxwell was third quickest with a 69.43 on his sixth and final lap.
Mike Jones was beaming after putting the Crazy Dogs Kawasaki near the top of the order with a 69.455 on the 12th of his 15 laps this afternoon.
“Coming here recovering from a broken scaphoid and no testing since the last round, not being on the bike, I am stoked to come here and be inside the top five.
“I have had a bit of a break so have been working on my fitness a lot and I know this place well.
“We’ve done a lot of work on the bike since Mallala and we have it working well now thanks to XXX Rated Suspension.
“We still have a lot of work to do, there is still a lot of pace to be found, but it is a learning year for me and that’s what I am doing, next year is the big year but we’re getting faster this year and that’s the aim.
“The Kawasaki has plenty of horsepower at the top end, that helps on the straights and it makes it easier to come out of the slipstream and pass other bikes. I only weigh 60kg too, which is 15 or 20kg less than some of the other guys, and I am little light jockey so that definitely helps too.
“The hard thing is getting it stopped and turned, some of the others bikes look to be doing that a little easier, so we are working really hard to get that sorted and I believe 100 per cent we will get there, then if we can we’ll be faster than anyone else.
“With the scaphoid injury, braking going into the right hand turns is not too much of a drama, I can lock on with my legs quite well and because I am doing the steering input with my right hand, turning the bike in using the counter-steering so no problem, but on the left hand corners, it is a slight problem, because you are hard on the brakes and also putting a lot of pressure on the wrist on the bars to get it turned, fortunately though it doesn’t strike as sharp pain it just becomes a more prominent ache as the day wears on, fortunately we only have short races so we should be right.
“We ran all practice sessions on one set of tyres and then even with brand new tyres for qualifying I still only did the same times, so I am confident that I can run those times on old rubber at the end of the race day.
“It’s my home round so I am looking forward to hopefully getting on the podium and I will certainly be doing my best.”
Sean Condon wrapped up fifth on the Bikebiz/Ipone Kawasaki ahead of Troy Herfoss and the first of the Yamaha men, Robert Bugden, was seventh ahead of teammate Cru Halliday. Bugden fell in the session and blamed the setting sun blinding his eyes at turn two but was thankfully okay.
Josh Hook and Glenn Scott rounded out the top ten ahead of Matt Walters and Chris Seaton.
In the Supersport category the top 12 riders were all Yamaha YZF-R6 mounted and coming out on top of that sea of blue was South Australian Daniel Falzon ahead of local lad Callum Spriggs. Chris Quinn showed great form to end the session third quickest ahead of Aaron Morris and Aiden Wagner.
Craig McMartin led the way in Pro Twins on a Ducati 1199 Panigale with a full second advantage over Aprilia mounted Brendan Clarke. Angus Reekie headed the Nakedbike sub-category on the KTM Superduke but looks unlikely to have the pace to challenge McMartin for the outright wins here at Queensland Raceway.
Ben Nicolson topped Formula Oz by a fraction of a second over Honda Fireblade mounted duo Paul Byrne and Chris Trounson.
Kyle Buckley held sway in the FX Ninja category by more than a full second over Brandon Demmery.
Racing kicks off tomorrow and continues across both Saturday & Sunday with racing both days from 0945.
- Adult One day GA pass Saturday $30
- Adult Two Day GA pass $40
- Children under 12 Free
- Parking around track allowed
- Tickets at the gate