It was a strong start to the 2019 Motul Pirelli Australian Superbike Championship (ASBK) for Matt Walters at Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit between 21-24 February, capturing 11th overall to open the season.
Armed with the brand new Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR for this year, after qualifying in 13th position Walters recorded 10-8-15 results across the three action-packed national races contested alongside the Superbike World Championship event.
Walters, who was top privateer in the 2018 standings, was satisfied with his performance in the opening two 12-lap races, however he encountered difficulties in race three that bumped him just outside of the top 10 overall. Still, he posted a weekend best of 1:33.842 to showcase his progression across the weekend.
“To finish 11th overall wasn’t a bad start for us in the championship and we’re relatively happy with that result,” Walters reflected. “We showed some really good form in the first two races with 10th and eighth, but in the final one we crossed the line in 15th.
“We had a few dramas in the last race, which is pretty uncharacteristic for us, but we learned a lot in that final outing and it’s going to help us moving forward. The new Ninja ZX-10RR is a little different in terms of set-up, so every track is going to be new for us again even though it’s not a totally different bike.
“Overall we’re satisfied with the points earned at round one and it’s nice to pick up where we left off last year. My best lap-time came in that final race, even though the result wasn’t there, so that was a positive and we’ve had two days of testing since round one. Wakefield Park should be a good one for us!”
Walters has since completed a positive two days of important pre-race testing at the Wakefield Park circuit in New South Wales, the venue of Round 2 in Goulburn to be held on 22-24 March.
Editorial courtesy of Matt Walters Racing