Tommy Bridewell has expressed his delight at having three-time British Superbike champion Ryuichi Kiyonari as his new team-mate at Bennetts Suzuki as the pair work on extracting race-winning potential from the GSX-R1000.
Martin Halsall's squad has landed a potent rider line-up for 2016 in Kiyonari and Bridewell which has been boosted with the pair hitting it off strongly as a partnership.
Both riders have been sharing data and ideas during pre-season testing to produce the maximum from the older Suzuki superbike which was the only manufacturer to miss out on the rostrum in BSB last year.
Bridewell says he's enjoyed working alongside Kiyonari and explained the team has been concentrating on its own development work and isn't concerned about setting quick times during testing.
“Kiyonari is a good fun and a nice guy,” Bridewell said. “It is nice now not to have a team-mate who is two-faced or back-stabbing like a lot of riders are in this paddock. He is a genuine, honest and phenomenally fast rider and I'm looking forward to working with him this year.
“He's been testing a few bits and I've probably been a little bit busier on the testing side which is my choice. For me, testing isn't about perfecting one specific setting and getting an outright lap time.
“We've gone for three setting configurations using different swingarms and forks. I wanted to test that all now because the BSB weekends go so fast we would never end up testing it. We've improved the bike massively and we are not a million miles away from each other in settings and times so it makes life easier for sure.”
Bridewell, who traded rides with Christian Iddon who joins Tyco BMW, is also confident his race craft isn't becoming hampered by developing the Suzuki and is relishing the opportunity to take on his rivals once the lights go out for race one of the 2016 season at Silverstone next weekend.
“Everyone I've come across I've had no problem against, at worst hold my own or be stronger against,” he said. “Where I'm a little bit weak, Silverstone specifically, is mid-corner. Entry and exit I'm strong but in the mid-corner I'm losing a bit.”