Sykes’ results ‘better than expected’ despite Guintoli’s gains

Tom Sykes refused to be too downcast after seeing his World Superbike championship lead shrink to twelve points after two torrentially wet races at Magny-Cours.

Sykes admitted he rode conservatively in race two
Photo: Kawasaki Racing
Despite claiming an emphatic pole position on Saturday afternoon, Sykes was powerless to stop the Aprilia pairing of Sylvain Guintoli and Marco Melandri claiming an Aprilia double-double in the treacherous conditions.

Sykes gained two extra points for fourth position in race one as team-mate Loris Baz was instructed to relinquish the position in the closing laps.

“In race one that was the limit. I wanted to go faster but unfortunately we have had some limitations for some time in wet conditions and we cannot just quite get to where we need to be. For race two we were also restricted by conditions. It was a big shame because we know I can go much, much faster. Given the conditions these results are better than I expected, so there is one bonus.”

In the second affair Sykes looked to have inherited a podium finish after crashes put paid to Davide Giugliano and Jonathan Rea’s races, before a late Leon Haslam charge pushed him back to fourth for the second time in a matter of hours.

The reigning world champion was quick to admit his aim was to conserve his title advantage and avoid any disastrous mistakes in conditions, which caught out several leading names.

“I wanted to fight with Sylvain and win the race but first I needed to finish the race. It could have been a lot worse but it could have been better. We are still in the best position in the championship so we need to go to Qatar and hopefully it lives up to its reputation as a desert and we will come out swinging.”


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