Michael Laverty is all fired up for attack on two fronts
Tyco BMW British Superbike star Michael Laverty explained that two podiums at Brands Hatch this weekend are his main focus as he looks to blast his 2015 BSB title aspirations into life with local team TAS Racing.
"Donington was a tough opening round for us," said Laverty, who battled bravely to a brace of top 10 finishes despite not quite having found his comfort zone on the super fast BMW Motorrad S1000RR.
"I came into Donington completely prepared for a tough weekend, so I really enjoyed race day, and it was very satisfying. Ninth and seventh are nothing to write home about, but after qualifying we seemed to be in a bit of a hole," explained Laverty, who returns to British Superbike this season after a couple of seasons in MotoGP with the PBM squad.
"Fifteenth on the grid wasn't ideal and I was uncomfortable on the bike with no answers to the electronic problems I'd encountered since day one of testing on the BMW," he said of his new bike.
But he gave massive credit to his new team and the support from BMW Motorrad in Germany.
"The BMW technical support really proved its worth," said the Toomebridge racer.
"With such a difficult weekend you learn a lot about the team of people you have working around you, and despite the evident frustration everyone kept focused on the job in hand," said Laverty, who then explained his reason for returning to the British Superbike series and the TAS Racing team in particular.
"I'm truly happy to be back in BSB. Yes I will miss the GP bikes, the circuits and the weather, but it's hard to beat that adrenaline buzz you get from success and I've been running a little low on that during the past two years," he said.
Laverty looks to have the best of both worlds, having secured a job test riding for the Aprilia MotoGP project in between BSB races, with a possibility of a wild card ride or two.
But what of his 'love affair' with TAS Racing, where he won a British Supersport title, and what looks to be a solid relationship with team manager Philip Neill?
"My aspirations are to win the BSB title and I have everything I need to do the job here at Tyco BMW," said Laverty confidently.
"I was in a very fortunate position during the off season, as I had the pick of a few rides. I chose TAS racing for a number of reasons.
"The switch to BMW was definitely a big part of that decision as the BMW S1000RR is a proper bit of kit and having the TAS team as their official Motorrad team in BSB guaranteed proper manufacturer support," he added.
"I enjoy working with the TAS team and Philip is a great manager - he believes in me, I can say exactly what I think to him and we won't fall out.
"He may not always agree however," laughed the former British Supersport champ.
"We managed to win the British Supersport title together, yet neither off us has managed to bag a British Superbike title, so it would be very fitting if we can pull it off together this year."