News 11 Nov 2010

BSB: Brookes makes shock switch to Relentless Suzuki

Aussie Josh Brookes has defected from HM Plant Honda to Relentless Suzuki for 2011.

Aussie Josh Brookes has defected from HM Plant Honda to Relentless Suzuki for 2011.

Australian Josh Brookes has made a shock switch the the Relentless by TAS Suzuki team to contest the 2011 British Superbike Championship.

Brookes, who finished second in this year’s BSB series with HM Plant Honda, will switch to a Suzuki GSX-R1000 for next season, set to make his first appearance in their distinctive black and white livery at a European test in early December.

“I’m really excited about the whole project to be honest,” Brookes commented. “I obviously know the strength of the GSX-R1000 Superbike having raced alongside the guys this season in BSB, so once Philip [Neill] discussed his ideas with me, I was keen to go in the Suzuki direction straight away.

“Everything has come together very easy and the whole thing feels really good to me. I’m also looking forward to basing myself in Northern Ireland for next season as I know the boys have a top working environment over there. I just want to do my training, get fit and focus on my racing.

“I’m confident I can do that with Relentless by TAS Suzuki and the end product will hopefully be the championship.”

The 27-year-old New South Wales rider finished this season’s British Superbike Championship in second place overall, amassing five victories from 13 podiums, but will be looking to go one better in Relentless by TAS Suzuki colours in 2011.

Earlier in his career, Brookes won the 2001 Australian Supersport Championship aboard a GSX-R600, before spending the majority of his career on Honda machinery.

“Even though he was my undisputed number one choice for next season I didn’t think Josh would become available, so to say I’m excited to have secured his signature would be a bit of an understatement,” Neill beamed.

“I’ve admired him as a rider ever since I first watched him race and as an ex-motocross man like myself, I found it very easy to relate to him when we entered into our discussions. It has all come together very well and pretty much along the same lines as the Guy Martin deal.

“That’s the way I like to do business. I’m also pleased that he has decided to base himself in Northern Ireland next year close to our workshop. This will give the whole team a better chance to get to know him and I’m sure he’ll enjoy the Northern Ireland way of life.”

Brookes is currently at home in Australia preparing for the 2011 BSB campaign, with speculation mounting that HM Plant will scale back to a one rider effort with triple champion Ryuichi Kiyonari for next year.

In other Relentless news, Victorian Cameron Donald will partner new signing Guy Martin on the International Road Racing scene in 2011 for Relentless by TAS Suzuki, completing the Moneymore-based team’s ‘pure road racing’ line-up.

Donald will remain in the TAS Racing set-up for a third successive season and the double TT winner is very much looking forward to renewing his connection with the team, on a full stable of GSX-R machinery.

“What can I say apart from, I couldn’t be happier to be racing for Relentless by TAS Suzuki again in 2011,” he said. “My goal, as always, is to win International Road Races and I know better than anyone I need to come out fighting in 2011.

“In saying that, I couldn’t have a better team in my corner for the job ahead and the only way I can thank Philip and Hector’s loyalty is by winning races next season. Securing this deal will also make the trip to Macau for the grand prix later this month a whole lot more enjoyable for all involved.

“Hopefully we can put on a good show in the Far East as it feels like the start of 2011 for me already.”