Sep 12, 2012
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Josh Waters (21).
Off track they're the best of mates. But when the visors drop they're fierce rivals, each putting everything on the line to finish first.
QBE Australian Superbike Championship title contenders Josh Waters and Wayne Maxwell will resume their season-long stoush for the final time at Queensland Raceway this weekend.
In 2012 they've shared 10 from 12 race wins and claimed the lion's share of pole positions, underlining the nature of their dominance.
The Suzuki and Honda riders head to the technical 3.12km Ipswich circuit separated by 19.5 points, a margin that has been whittled down by Maxwell since a disastrous DNF in the year's opening race.
50 points, plus a bonus for pole, are up for grabs this weekend, meaning the task is not beyond Maxwell, who has been a part of the Australian Superbike scene since 2001.
"All season long we've just been trying to make up that deficit from the first race at Phillip Island," said Maxwell.
"So far it's gone to plan. I've won more races than anyone else this year and been able to close that gap up as much as possible in the last few rounds.
"I don't know what approach Josh will be taking, whether he will be conservative or whether he wants to try and round it out with two wins.
"I know we can be strong at Queensland Raceway and the team will be doing everything it can to put the CBR1000 on top of the Championship come Sunday afternoon.
"Anything can happen, we just have to hope it falls in our favour."
Waters is in the box seat to add a second ASBK title to his name alongside his sensational rookie win in 2009.
Since then he's not raced a full domestic season until this year in 2010 he was sidelined after a testing crash in the US, and in 2011 he joined the Yoshimura World Superbike team for selected events.
The Suzuki rider knows beating a determined Maxwell will be no easy task this weekend.
"We go into the weekend with a good lead but anything can happen, until we've gotten through that first race on Sunday then we won't have the full picture," said Waters.
"Wayne will be tough but it is the other riders in the mix that could play a part.
"There's a really close race on for third in the championship and the guys fighting for that are all capable of winning races.
"There's no team orders at Suzuki or amongst any of the top guys everyone wants to round out the season on top so I expect the racing to be closer than it has all year."
Josh's younger brother Brodie is in the Championship picture within the Motul Supersport ranks as well.
Just half a point off the lead and riding a strong run of results, the potential is there for Waters to complete a rare double, not only for Suzuki but also for the family.
The duo train together and Josh said he feels his brother is in good stead for the weekend.
"It would be a great feeling for our family if it did fall that way, Brodie works really hard and since his operation to help his arm pump has come on extra strong."
Triumph's Mitchell Carr heads the Supersport standings, with Waters a close second and Team Honda's Josh Hook just three points adrift in third.
The Superbike and Supersport fields will contest a pair of 17-lap races each on Sunday to determine class Champions.
A mix of exciting classes will contest no less than 20 races across the weekend, with action beginning on-track from 10.30am on Friday.
Along with the two-wheel classes, the Sports Racer car class will be making its debut showing at Queensland Raceway.
Tickets start from just $15 for children/pensioners and $25 for adults, with the two-day passes - $30 for children/pensioners and $40 for adults offering best value.
Visit for further information and full schedule of events