Superpole Sepang: Super Sykes takes up the challenge
Never in two Superbike events organized in Sepang (in 2014 and 2015), the poleman has won a race! De – very – far the fastest this morning in Superpole, Tom Sykes will try to ward off bad luck … This sixth Superpole of the 2016 season promised to be special: Tom Sykes was indeed obliged to participate in …
Never in two Superbike events organized in Sepang (in and), the poleman has won a race! By – very – far the fastest this morning in Superpole, Tom Sykes will try to ward off bad luck…
This sixth Superpole of the 2016 season promised to be special: Tom Sykes was indeed obliged to participate in the repechage, "Mister Superpole" having been deprived of 10th place in the combined times of Friday for a thousandth of a second (!) By his teammate Jonathan Rea (!!)…
As soon as they left the pits, the thirteen SP1 pilots saw a few drops of rain crash into their visors! They therefore hasten to complete their warm-up lap and to set a first lap while the track is still dry. Leon Camier who opens the track, almost falls at the end of his first lap…
The track may have been completely resurfaced this winter, but its excellent grip – a little aggressive even! – does not allow Superbikes to do without rain tires when the surface is wet. And precisely, the weather is bad this morning in Sepang.
Starting in the last in order to benefit from a clear track, Tom Sykes climbs to the top of the timesheet when the track is officially declared "Wet". The second best time then belongs to Pawel Szkopek, the 2015 Polish Superbike champion who rides for the Yamaha Toth team. !
After a stop of several minutes in the pits, the Aces of the handlebars set off again under a ray of sunshine. Camier and De Angelis immediately post their respective MV Agusta and Aprilia in the first two places but Sykes hoists his ZX-10R to the top of SP1 with about fifteen seconds from the end of the session.
The English Ninja improved his time even further in the following lap and secured his qualification in SP2 ahead of his compatriot Leon Camier. Australian Josh Brookes seems able to qualify, sets the third fastest time but is beaten by eight thousandths of a second by Alex de Angelis !
In two short hours – for the first WSBK race, tomorrow for the second – the San Marino will therefore place his No. 15 RSV4 in the lead of fifth place, ahead of the No. 25 BMW of the 2015 British Superbike champion and the Ducati No. ° 12 of the 2014 German Superbike champion, Xavi Fores.
The second BMW Milwaukee n ° 17 driven by Karel Abraham will start from 16th place, followed by the Ducati VTF n ° 99 of Luca Scassa (replacement of Fabio Menghi) and the Kawasaki Grillini n ° 16 of Joshua Hook. Al SUlaiti, Toth, Schimmtter, Szkopek and Viziello will complete the Malaysian grid. The first places, they will be played during the SP2…
Nicky Hayden sets the best time of the first five minutes on racing tires, but the Honda n ° 69 is beaten by a certain Kawasaki n ° 66 … Having passed through Superpole 1, "Major Tom" is already hot! Davies, Rea and Lowes close the Top 5 when the drivers return to the pit to put on the softer tires.
Two minutes from the end, Chaz Davies leads SP2 but the n ° 7 Ducati is passed by Jordi Torres. Then the lap times panic … Nicky Hayden signs an excellent time: a few turns have changed profile this winter, but the route remains the same and the 2006 MotoGP champion knows him on the toes of his gloves for having completed countless numbers there. laps in tests, practice and races !
The reigning WSBK champion, Jonathan Rea, nevertheless managed to beat the "Kentucky Kid" a few seconds from the exit of the checkered flag. It was then that Tom Sykes burst into the back straight with … almost eight tenths of a second ahead of the "Number One" !
"Mister Superpole" passed the last corner without a hitch and won his fourth pole position of the year (the 34th of his career), breaking the track record with a Superbike which had belonged since 2014 to our champion Sylvain Guintoli (then on Aprilia).
In his final lap, Alex Lowes manages to slide his official Yamaha n ° 22 between the two factory Kawasaki n ° 66 and n ° 1. His teammate Sylvain Guintoli, constantly faster in qualifying this season, must be particularly frustrated not to ride this weekend to heal his foot !
Forced to stay at home in England, "Guinters" will hopefully return in full possession of his means for the English event, which will take place at Donington Park, a few laps away from the home of our favorite n ° 50 . Let’s therefore wish Sylvain Guintoli a good recovery. Without forgetting Sylvain Barrier !
But back to Sepang, where Nicky Hayden will set off for the two Malay races … and broomsticks since thunderstorms lurk on the one hand, and the track, if it remains dry, mistreats the Pirelli slicks on the other! 2015 WSBK runner-up Chaz Davies and 2016 rookie Markus Reiterberger will also start from the second row.
The 2015 Superstock 1000 champion, Lorenzo Savadori, adds a sixth motorcycle brand in this Superpole Top 7: Aprilia, whose official RSV4s drove extremely fast in previous years on the fast and wide track of Sepang. The Italian n ° 32 precedes Jordi Torres (3rd of the second round 2015 on RSV4) and Davide Giugliano.
In fourth row are the 2014 Supersport champion Michael van den Mark at the controls of the second Honda Ten Kate, Anthony West who replaces Sylvain Barrier within the Kawasaki Pedercini team and Leon Camier at the handlebars of the only F4 entered by the factory. MV Agusta.
Superpole World Superbike Sepang 2016
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