Tom Sykes has taken pole position at Donington Park taking yet another fastest-lap-ever in the process. The Grinner smashed the record that he set here last year by nearly four tenths.
|Sykes claims his fourth pole position of the year
Photo: Neil Dethridge
The first session was quite dramatic with five or six riders battling not to be in the drop-out zone. With 6 minutes to go the three riders heading out of Superpole were Baz, Cluzel and Badovini. Badovini sought to change this, as he went 11th fastest with 5 minutes to go whilst Loris Baz shot to second on the time sheets. Davies displaced Baz for second at the end of the session as Fixi Crescent Suzuki’s Jules Cluzel put in a strong last lap effort to make it into SP2. Not so lucky was Leon Haslam who had been running in the top ten at one point, he fell into the drop zone without enough time to improve therefore will start from 13th
Within his first couple of laps of SP2 Tom Sykes pencilled in a new circuit record, a 1’27.560 – over two tenths faster than his record from last year. Guintoli was the only man in the second session to be within half a second of the Huddersfield man. Despite several efforts and a decent lap from Carlos Checa, he didn’t manage to get into SP3 as Giugliano shot from 12th to 4th fastest and Jules Cluzel failed to replicate his last-minute pace of SP1 in the second session, meaning he’ll start from 11th. Loris Baz found himself 12th.
Guintoli put an impressive lap in at the start of the session, a 1’27.716 – bang on the best-lap from Sykes last year however Sykes then put in two consecutive laps faster than the time he set in SP2, settling with a 1’27.378 – the fastest ever superbike lap around Donington Park. Sykes is joined on the front row once again by the Aprilia duo of Sylvain Guintoli and Eugene Laverty whilst Johnny Rea qualifies 4th, just missing out on the front row for the second time this season. Leon Camier put his FIXI Crescent Suzuki in fifth from the BMWs of Melandri and Davies. Giugliano finds himself in the middle of the third row alongside wildcard Niccolo Canepa – who put in an incredible performance to get into SP3 ahead of both Alstare Ducati team mates, including 2011 World Champion, Carlos Checa.