Josh Brookes says pole position for the new Ducati Panigale V4 R in only its second Bennetts British Superbike Championship event bodes well for the future’ following his dominant performance in qualifying at Oulton Park.

The much-anticipated machine made its competition debut at Silverstone last month, but a podium finish by team-mate Scott Redding was tempered by Brookes’ double DNF due to technical issues.

Bouncing back by topping the Oulton Park in-season test last week, Brookes has continued to set the standard during the race weekend by topping both dry weather free practice sessions and each phase of qualifying.

Breaking the lap record in Q3 with a 1m 34.084s, Brookes’ pole position – ahead of Tommy Bridewell on the sister Oxford Racing Ducati – was good enough to put him a full seven tenths clear of the opposition. It is performance Brookes says gives him great optimism going forward given the bike’s young development.

“I’m naturally delighted to have taken pole position today and after all these years of being rivals to the Be Wiser Ducati team, I’m grateful for the opportunity to represent them and to bounce back like this after the first round is tremendous for all of us.

"The team and the bike are working really well and we’re already at the stage where we’re just fine tuning the bike which at such an early stage of the season bodes well for the rest of the year.

“We’re well aware we still have a lot of work to do and one thing we’ve missed this weekend due to the weather is a longer run but our pace is good in both the wet and the dry so let’s hope we come away with the two good results we deserve.”



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