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News Sykes on the pace is WSB Testing

Discussion in 'Motorcycling News' at netrider.net.au started by NetriderBot, Jan 28, 2016.

  1. World Superbike Championship Press release:

    2013 World Superbike Champion Tom Sykes looks sets for a great year dominating the time sheets on both days of the two-day WorldSBK pre-season test held at Spain’s Jerez this week, and setting a blistering lap of 1m39.24s on his Kawasaki, to be the first world superbike rider to break the 1.m40s barrier at the Spanish circuit.

    His lap-record pace, was set on the second afternoon of the test, and is quicker than his record breaking pole position from 2015.

    Recovering Roman, Ducati’s Davide Giugliano, was just over a tenth of a second behind Sykes, while 2015 championship runner-up and Ducati teammate Chaz Davies was third fastest, both just in front of experienced rookie Nicky Hayden on the Honda.

    Australia’s Josh Brookes made his first appearance on the WorldSBK circuit this week, as he joins the championship for 2016 with his Milwaukee BMW team. His first race at will be at his home track, Phillip Island, at the season opener from February 26-28.

    Brookes met his foes — and his race machine — for the first time at the Jerez test this week and spent the two days coming to grips with the circuit. The 2015 British Superbike champion made big improvements over the two days to break into the top 10 with a respectable 1m41.826s lap, with 79 laps under his belt, 1.9 seconds off the leaders.

    Josh Brookes Winter Testing on the Milwaukee BMW.

    Post-test the Sydneysider tweeted: “Finished the day p10. Completed 79 laps. For me it’s a positive result. A lot still to come but very good progress for just two days on bike.”

    Fog earlier in the day left conditions difficult until midday on day two, after which most riders were able to set more representative lap times. Sykes’ lap of 1:39.924 was the fastest of the day and of the test.

    “All smiles round here because basically we have changed a lot of settings, exploring more parameters with the new bike,” said Sykes.

    “It is confirmation of what we have developed in previous years that we have done a good job because this new bike is the ‘baby’ from those years. It is working well for both riders and Kawasaki has done a great job. There are still areas where I want to improve both the bike and me but to come away from both winter tests in Jerez fastest is good, because it is not my strongest circuit. This adds to the excitement and motivation for the coming season on the new Ninja ZX-10R.”

    The Aruba.it Racing Team riders of Giugliano and Davies proved the only two capable of putting in a lap time within the same half second, 0.123 and 0.186 behind respectively. Giugliano escaped injury from a minor lowside at Turn 1 whilst pushing hard during the afternoon, the only consequence of which was an interruption to his race simulation.

    The Honda duo of Nicky Hayden and Michael van der Mark also improved their lap times today and both by over a second. Hayden ended the day fourth with his teammate only marginally further back in fifth, the gap between the two smaller than previously.

    Barni Racing rider Xavi Forés impressed by topping the timesheets for a good portion of the afternoon after ending yesterday’s session in eighth. Today, his 1:40.761 was over a second faster and good enough to keep him in the top six at the close of business.

    The mood at Kawasaki remains buoyant after the two days of testing in Jerez, with Sykes fastest on both days and his teammate comfortable on a ZX-10R he is working on refining. Reigning Champion Rea remains convinced that the new Ninja will be faster and continues his search for the new limit.

    “It is clear that the new bike has been developed more for another riding style and it asks you to ride in a certain way. So we are still exploring exactly how to extract the best out of the bike and we have changed many things,” said Rea, post-test.

    “It was clear that when we arrived here the track grip level was much worse than the last time, so it required a little bit of a different set-up. Our testing philosophy this winter – testing big items and not getting carried away with the set-up – has really made sense here. It was the same track, same part of the world but a different character this time.

    “We had a new fork specification to try and a different engine character. We are just using the tools in the toolbox now and understanding more about the new Ninja ZX-10R. We have been working calmly and methodically and if the starting lights went out at Jerez tomorrow we would not be seventh.”

    Rea ended the day seventh overall and just in front of the Pata Yamaha riders of Sylvain Guintoli and Alex Lowes.

    The fastest of the WorldSSP riders was once again reigning champion Sofuoglu, with new Puccetti teammate Krummenacher still the Turkish rider’s closest challenger.

    The post Sykes on the pace is WSB Testing appeared first on Cycle Torque Magazine.

    Continue reading...
  2. Good work for Josh. He's come out of the Brit SBK, on a Yamaha R1, into WSBK on a BMW, which he's never raced before. BSBK is a pretty high level, but it is a domestic championship, and they do have some slightly funny etiquette. That's not a criticism, it's great, but they are very respectful of each other. WSBK, somewhat less so, a lot more like run of the mill Australian and US stuff.

    I am a bit of a Tom Sykes fan, mostly because he's such an unlikely chap. Most successful bike racers conform to a certain blue-print, think Doohan, Rainey, Schwantz, Baylis and Corser, Carl Foggarty. Matt Mladdin.Tom is not that kind of man, not even close. But he can go very fast. He leads the times, but he led the times at this point last year as well, and once real racing started Johnnie Rea just walked all over him. I have nothing against Johnnie, he's great, but he is your classic motorbike racer. I'd kind of like to see Tom win another one, because even with one world championship under him, he's still the underdog. Being able to turn up a fast lap in testing or qualifying is not all it takes. Tom Sykes is not quite Eddie the Eagle, but ... I'd cheer like hell if he managed a second title.
  3. Huh?
  4. #4 kneedragon, Jan 28, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2016
    Yes, Hayden has pulled the pin on MotoGP and has retired to WSBK. He will be team mates this year with young van der Marc, on the Dutch teams Hondas. About 5th place is roughly where you'd expect them.

    Expect that to hop up a few spots if & when Honda do as threatened and release a mid level sports bike. They currently make and sell a few replicas of the Bike Stoner last raced. Those are (cough, sorta) street legal and they will cost you over a hundred thousand, although that's still not in complete GP tune... And nobody is buying them because you can't race them. But if Honda pull their socks up and make like a 'super' FireBlade, that can get homologated ... Either Hayden or van der Marc is looking very good to pick up a pretty easy WSBK title.
  5. Sorry, I mean't. How can you consider a previous WSBK rider a rookie? I guess he didn't race a season though.
  6. #6 kneedragon, Jan 28, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2016
    I'm trying to remember the early part of Nicki's career - it was a while ago. He came in and won despite all Danni could do to get in the way, but I thought he was racing SBK in the US, with a focus on big name / bike prize races, like the 200 at Speed Week...

    From Wikipedia...

    Hayden is one of a long line of American road racers to come from the American dirt-track scene. In 1999, Hayden won his first Grand National Championship race (Hagerstown Half Mile) and took Rookie of the Year honors. He was also declared the AMA's athlete of the Year. In 2000, Nicky Hayden won the Springfield Short Track. In 2002, despite racing in just a handful of dirt-track events, Hayden was able to win four races: Springfield Short Track (twice), Springfield TT, and Peoria TT . At the Springfield TT race, the three Hayden brothers took the first three places (Nicky 1st, Tommy 2nd, and Roger Lee 3rd).[1] The win at the 2002 Peoria TT came after beating thirteen-time Peoria winner, Chris Carr, despite starting from the penalty line. Hayden only lacks a win at a mile track to join Dick Mann, Kenny Roberts Sr., Bubba Shobert, and Doug Chandler in the prestigious "Grand Slam Club."

    MotoGP career
    Honda (2003–2008)

    Immediately after winning his AMA Superbike championship, Hayden was tapped to join not only Honda's MotoGP racing efforts, but what was arguably the premier team in MotoGP racing: Repsol Honda. Hayden also became teammate to the defending series champion Valentino Rossi. Hayden was seemingly unfazed, and in his first year of MotoGP racing (2003), he finished fifth in the championship points standings while riding Honda's RC211V, an achievement that won him the Rookie-of-the-Year award. In 2005, Hayden finished third in the MotoGP championship points standings behind Marco Melandri and series winner Valentino Rossi. In 2004, however, Hayden had a difficult year and was widely critiqued, luckily he answered critics with his first win in 2005 at Laguna Seca.[2]
    So, he went from dirt track to US SBK, then straight to MotoGP. So he has no form as a WSBK rider.
  7. He raced a WSBK event in Laguna Seca I think.
    • Informative Informative x 1
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  9. The tank and tail section looks like it has been lifted off a 1299
  10. Yeah, I had a second (closer) look, and I am less impressed. There is very obviously a cylinder bank sticking up, but if you picture a second forward bank, it doesn't seem to fit the way I would expect...

    Ok, the pics may well be bogus, but the concept has been bandied about a bit, and it does seem quite likely the 'Blade is due a big refresh. If nothing else, it could use some electronic toys like traction control... And I can't quite see Nicki going into quiet post-MotoGP retirement, on a bike that was due to run mid field and slowly go backwards. The "new" bike might still be some way off, but if it wasn't coming, I don't think he'd have gone there.

    I think he should be a bit careful while the new bike is coming. Chris Vermuelin signed up for Kawasaki SBK knowing a new bike was on the way, and then fell off the old one and ended his career...