Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R pilot, Robbie Bugden had a stranglehold on the championship leading into the weekend however the double point format of the final round meant that the Superbike title was far from secured. Placing 2nd in race one and 3rd in race two provided the Queenslander with enough championship points to win the title before the final race. Crossing the line 2nd in the final race granted Bugden 2nd place overall at the last round of the championship.
“It’s been a great weekend. We sealed up the championship and we had some great battles with all the top guys so it was a great way to finish up the season,” said the 2016 Australasian Superbike Champion, Robbie Bugden.
Josh Brookes (left) and Robbie Bugden (right) - final race of the 2016 Australasian Superbike Championship
After 11 years racing abroad, World Superbike Championship contender and British Superbike Champion, Josh Brookes made a defiant returned to Australian domestic series racing over the weekend. Josh rode the SA Kawasaki BCperformance Ninja ZX-10R in place of the injured Ben Burke and he won the final round overall, placing 3-1-1.
“My character is just to give it my all every time, whether it’s for a pay check or weather it’s for the chance to past the line first and nothing as a reward. That’s the racer in us and certainly the racer in me,” said Josh.
“I want to thank the team and Kelvin (Team Manager) for inviting me in. They have been a pleasure to work with, it’s difficult to jump on a new team and they have been very accommodating.”
“Thanks to all the sponsors that Kelvin and the team (SA Kawasaki BCperformance) have. People are tired of hearing all the sponsors rattled off but that’s what it takes to get racing and we need more sponsors and people to get behind the racing so it can grow to what I’m used to in the British series,” commented Josh.
(left to right) Josh Brookes, Kelvin Reilly & Robbie Bugden
Another Kawasaki supported rider, Matt Walters was rewarded for his tireless efforts throughout the season with a solid 3rd place overall in the Superbike class aboard his Kawasaki Connection Ninja ZX-10R.
Matt Walters - Kawasaki Connection - Ninja ZX-10R
“It’s a good feeling being on the podium. Robbie had the edge with his experience this season but I’ve definitely learnt a fair bit over the course of the year,” said Walters.
“The result this year is confidence building for me as a rider. It’s a boost at the end of the year to keep us going and we will be sure to aim for higher results next year. It provides more motivation for me and the team to strive to be better,” said Matt humbly.
“Thanks to Kawasaki Motors Australia and all sponsors, it’s been a difficult year but still very pleased with third.”
Overall podium - 2016 Australasian Superbike Championship
Dealer Principal of SA Motorcycles, Evan Byles piloted his SA Kawasaki BCperformance Ninja ZX-10R to 6th overall at the final round and 3rd overall for the series in the Formula OZ class.
In the 600cc Supersport class, Kyle Buckley of team SA Kawasaki BCperformance was 2nd overall for the final round and became the 2016 Champion after scoring 1-3-1-3 in the four races.
“That was probably the hardest couple of laps I’ve ever done. Mitch (Levy) started to gap me and I thought I was better off not trying to challenge him. I’m so glad it’s finally over and to come away with the win is awesome so I’m really looking forward to next year and hopefully we can carry on with whatever we do in winning form,” said Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R pilot, Kyle Buckley as he reflected on his final race of the season which provided him the points needed to win the Supersport championship.
Kyle Buckley - 2016 Australasian Superbike Champion, Supersport Class - Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R
Manager of the Kawasaki Motors Australia backed SA Kawasaki BCperformance racing team said, “It is emotional and we are absolutely elated. I’ve been involved in motorcycle racing for most of my life and to run a team with so many bikes and so many different variables and for it all to come together with these results is phenomenal. I dedicate it to every single member of team SA Kawasaki BCperformance who made it happen.”
“For most of the series we were probably the team to beat in the championship and I’m pleased with how the team dealt with the pressure that came from that. It was upsetting that Ryan Masri and Ben Burke were injured and couldn’t finish the season but also very appreciative of Josh Brookes and his professional input for the final round”.
“The Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R performed flawlessly all year and it is the best motorcycle that I have worked with out of the crate. The Ninja ZX-6R is still formidable which is proven by the World Supersport results and Kyle winning the ASC Supersport tile as well.”
“I’d like to thank the Australasian Superbike Championship organisers for the series and obviously SA Motorcycles, Kawasaki Motors Australia and all of our sponsors for providing us the products and tools to do the job,” Kelvin concluded.
Kawasaki Motors Australia would like to congratulate each Kawasaki supported rider for their relentless efforts, outstanding results and high level of sportsmanship throughout the 2016 Swann Insurance Australasian Superbike Championship series.
Team SA Kawasaki BCperformance - 2016 Australasian Superbike Championship
Find out more about Kawasaki supported riders by clicking HERE to visit their rider profiles.