Airwaves Yamaha riders Leon Camier and James Ellison are feeling bullish about their race chances ahead of the opening round of the 2009 British Superbike Championship at Brands Hatch after qualifying on the second row.
The pair have steadily worked their way up the field over the course of the weekend having arrived at the opening round with no testing on the Yamaha R1 under their belt, with Camier and Ellison eventually snaring fifth and seventh on the grid respectively.
Although not quite the front row Camier would have been hoping for after producing competitive lap times during the latter free practice sessions, the local rider was nonetheless delighted to be just a couple of hundredths off the ultimate pace all the same.
"To qualify fifth at the very first round on the new Airwaves Yamaha is fantastic,” he said. “Our times throughout qualifying have been consistently competitive and I was only 0.013s away from the front row so it's looking good for the races. The bike is feeling better all the time, and there's definitely still a lot more to come."
Ellison, meanwhile, was buoyed by his run to seventh position after a tough weekend that has been hampered by mechanical woes and weather disruption.
Nonetheless, despite finding himself on the cusp of the drop zone during Q1, Ellison was delighted to be just off the front row when it mattered.
"Today has been really positive. We've made some big steps with the set-up on the bike and it shows in how much we've reduced our lap times from yesterday.
“We've got a few more things to try tomorrow and I'll be pushing hard for some good results in both races. A top five finish would be a great reward for all the hard work the Airwaves Yamaha team have put in this weekend."