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After a disappointing run in the UK, Josh Waters returned to Oz and got his mojo back on home soil. He talks us through his come-from-behind 2017 ASBK title victory

At the start of the 2017 Australian Superbike season, pundits predicted a championship for the ages. Herfoss, Maxwell, Allerton, Staring, Bugden, Falzon… more than half a dozen riders were considered genuine contenders, yet few predicted that the man holding the trophy in October would be Suzuki’s Joshua Waters.

It was a campaign that almost didn’t even begin, as the 30-year-old from Mildura emerged from a difficult three-year stint riding in the British Superbike Championship fearing he’d lost his edge.

“I hated it in the UK,” he tells us candidly. “I liked racing, but I didn’t like it over there for some reason. It was just different, and I wished that I could ride over there like I did in Australia.”

Already a two-time Australian Superbike champion for Suzuki (’09 and ’12), Waters began his UK career riding an R1 for Milwaukee Yamaha before switching back to the familiar GSX-R in 2014.

“The middle year (2014) was the best year for me because I got on really well with the team. I won some races – I know it was raining, but I still went good in the dry  – and the last half of the year I was always in the top six. My teammate was John Hopkins, he goes alright, and I was able to match him or beat him, so it was quite good. But 2015 was just bloody difficult.”

Read the full story in the current issue of AMCN (Vol 67 No 11) on sale now

Words Matt O’Connell

Images Andrew Gosling