Despite Markus Reiterberger (Van Zon-Remeha-BMW) having seven kilograms extra weight added to his BMW, in accordance with the IDM Balance of Performance Rule and due to the dominant performances already shown by the 21-year-old in season 2015, the German still scored a double victory at Assen to secure the 2015 German IDM Superbike Championship.
Previous champion, Xaiv Fores, also had four kilograms added to his Ducati for the Assen round.
Adding more interest to the Assen round was Australian Josh Brookes joining the MGM Yamaha squad, after regular incumbents Max Neukirchner and Damian Cudlin were sidelined with injury.
Brookes was coming into IDM off the back of four consecutive British Superbike race wins with the Milwaukee Yamaha squad. The IDM specification YZF-R1M a very different animal to his BSB bike, thus Brookes had to adapt in the qualifying sessions but still set the quickest pace in regulation qualifying, before finishing second in the Superpole session, setting his quick time on a race tyre.
Slotting into fourth position at the start for the first 15-lap race, Brookes quickly found his rhythm and fought his way towards the front. He passed Xavi Fores midway through the race in a fight for the remaining podium spot and successfully defended the position as he crossed the line in third place, 1.358s from Reiterberger in first.
The second race saw more of the same, Brookes again worked his way up from fourth to third, but this time he was unable to hold the position after the rear tyre slipped on the rim. He continued to fight bravely and took the chequered flag in fourth place, 1.887s from the BMW of race winner and newly crowned champion, Reiterberger. Lanzi was second and Fores third, while the four were closely matched, no other rider in the two races finished within 20-second of the top four which were clearly the class of the 32-rider field.
Josh Brookes – Race 1 – 3rd, Race 2 – 4th – “In the first race I made a small mistake with the lights, because I went so fast, but over the race distance that wasn’t such an important amount of time. I didn’t find the grip and the lap times I had in qualifying. The grip level was not the same and the tyre was spinning a lot, so I couldn’t improve on the third position. I kept pushing until the end and was hoping maybe the front two would be losing some speed at the end of the race, but it was not enough for me to catch them. In the second race I got a bad start. The tyres felt better than during race one so I was able to ride faster. At some point early in the race the rear tyre spun on the rim and a vibration started. I was able to keep pushing for a while but then I couldn’t continue to keep up those lap times so I started to drop back and I couldn’t do anything more.”
Michael Galinski – Team Yamaha MGM Team Manager – “During the first race we had a small problem with the grip of the rear. Though we didn’t change anything at the suspension from the last practice, we didn’t have the grip we had back then, but it was ok and we got a really solid result. We were happy to be back on the podium and this was a really good thing. In the second race the rear tyre spun a bit on the rim. We don’t know why at the moment and need to look at this again, but this result was ok again. Josh did two great races and we were able to end the weekend without any crashes. We’re now looking forward to the future and Hockenheim, where our permanent riders should be back and we hopefully make it onto the podium again.”
The eighth and final round will be held at Hockenheimring on September 25-27.
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