Suzuki Report On WSBK Support Races

Shawn Giles Team Yoshimura Suzuki riders Shawn Giles, Craig Coxhell and Joshua Waters all finished in podium positions in the Australian support races at the second round of the Superbike World Championship race meeting at Victoria's Phillip Island race circuit on 2-4 March.

Shawn Giles Team Yoshimura Suzuki riders Shawn Giles, Craig Coxhell and Joshua Waters all finished in podium positions in the Australian support races at the second round of the Superbike World Championship race meeting at Victoria's Phillip Island race circuit on 2-4 March.

In a strong showing for the new-look team for 2007, Giles finished overall second in the Superbike class behind reigning Australian champion Jamie Stauffer, and like Stauffer was the only rider to secure a top-three result in all three Superbike races.

Giles' results were all the more impressive as the three-times Australian Superbike Champion had not raced at the fast and challenging 4.45km Phillip Island circuit for over 12 months.

The 36-year-old proved he was back to full-race fitness after last year's lay-off due to injury and was straight down to business when he was quickest in the opening Superbike qualifying session, then led two of the three races.

In Saturday's opening 10-lap race Giles finished a close second, just 0.337sec behind the race winner, backing up with third in race two later that afternoon. Another second in race three on Sunday, this time 0.898sec behind the race winner, gave Giles the overall runner-up position for the weekend.

Teammate Coxhell, showing the talent and determination that brought the Shepparton (Vic) rider the 2003 Australian Superbike Championship, charged through the pack in race three to secure third place, just 0.07sec behind Giles after momentarily getting ahead of his teammate two corners from the finish.

Coxhell hadn't raced at the Victorian circuit since 2003, the year he won the Australian Superbike Championship aboard a Team Suzuki GSX-R1000 before heading overseas for the next three seasons. The lack of track time at the world's fastest race track left the 24-year-old in 12th position on the grid after the two short qualifying sessions on Friday, making Sunday's third place all the more impressive.

Twenty-year-old Waters was another to impress. Following his strong debut showing aboard the Team Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R600 at the opening round of the Australian Supersport Championship at Sydney's Eastern Creek Raceway two weeks ago, 20-year-old Waters continued that momentum in the three Supersport support races at Phillip Island.

A third in Sunday's final Supersport race was backed up by fourth place in each of the earlier two races on Saturday to give Waters fourth overall for the weekend on a against opposition on motorcycles which have a head start 12 months of development.

Team Yoshimura Suzuki race manger Phil Tainton was quick to praise Waters for his results on a motorcycle that has not long been out of its packing crate and is still in the early stages of its development.

Tainton now turns his focus to Round Two of the eight-round Australian Superbike and Supersport Championship, which takes place at Victoria's Winton Raceway, 22-25 March.



"I couldn't have asked for more from the riders this weekend – all three scored podium finishes at some stage.

"Our Suzuki GSX-R1000 Superbikes already have a lot of development behind them, and Shawn and Craig showed how competitive they and the bikes can be, but I was especially pleased with progress with the new GSX-R600 Supersport.

"It's only in its second race meeting, and it's never been raced in the wet before. Josh's performance on the damp track on Sunday morning when he finished third was impressive.

"We showed we have good speed from the bikes, and all three riders can run at the front in both classes. "Congratulations to Jamie Stauffer and Jason O'Halloran on their Superbike and Supersport wins this weekend."


Shawn Giles

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"It's good to turn around the bad luck of two weeks ago at the opening round of the Australian Superbike Championship and get some good results.

"The last time I raced at Phillip Island was at the same World Superbike meeting at this time last year, as I missed the GP meeting in September due to injury.

"To lead two of the three races at some stage and to stand on the podium in all three races was a great result for the team in view of the limited practice time we had.

"The bike had good speed all weekend, and I can't say enough about the team and the performance of the tyres.

"Second overall on the weekend is good, but it's one place short of where I want to be."



"Third in the final race was a great way to finish off the weekend, and I'm happy with the improvement in my laptimes across the three days.

"The last time I rode at Phillip Island was in 2003, and with only two short qualifying sessions it took a little while to get up to speed on the fastest track on the world calendar.

"My best lap in race three was only one tenth off the fastest lap time set by the race winner, and I had a great battle in that final race with my teammate Shawn – although he got me by 0.07sec in the run to the flag.

"The team has been working on getting me comfortable on the bike and adjusting the settings to suit my riding style, and the results are beginning to show."



"I'm happy with fourth overall on points from the three races as we're still in the early stages of developing the Suzuki GSX-R600.

"I hadn't ridden the bike at Phillip Island before this weekend, so with the limited track time under our belts it's a pleasing result.

"Getting on to the podium in the final race of the weekend shows that we're heading in the right direction."



Superbike Overall Results 1 Jamie Stauffer, 2 Shawn Giles (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 3 Scott Charlton, 4 Glenn Allerton, 5 Daniel Stauffer, 6 Adam Fergusson, 7 Craig Coxhell (Suzuki GSX-R1000), 8 Bryan Staring, 9 Shannon Johnson, 10 Anthony Gobert.

Supersport Overall Results 1 Jason O'Halloran, 2 Jeremy Crowe, 3 Jamie Stauffer, 4 Joshua Waters (Suzuki GSX-R600), 6 Gareth Jones, 7 Wayne Maxwell, 8 Bryan Staring, 9 Alex Tomassetti. 10 Brendan Watson.

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