Rea and Sykes put in two solid days in Rimini
After securing the 100th race win for Kawasaki in WorldSBK, Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) had two productive days at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli. Putting in a stunning amount of laps and building up a consistent pace, the team-mates left the circuit happy ahead of the seventh round of the season in just under three weeks time.
Sykes, who has been hindered by an ongoing illness over recent months, is beginning to feel back to full fitness. Happy with the consistence pace and lap times he was putting in at Misano, the British rider was able to test different engines in his ZX-10RR and will come out fighting in round seven.
“In a nutshell we had some good weather and put a lot of laps in,” begins Sykes.” I think I did 103 laps on Wednesday and 55 on Thursday, meaning we put a lot into it and had some good results. I had a little look at trying to improve single lap pace and we really covered a lot of parameters. I am very happy with our speed in Misano. At Aragon, Assen and Imola my physical condition was terrible, at Donington it was almost better and now I feel slightly more settled yet again. That reflects in doing over 100 laps on Wednesday at a strong pace - then taking two cappuccinos for breakfast, a quick stretch, and I was straight back into it again today. A big thanks to the team as they were flat out in Donington - and then straight after they changed engines and set-up, put the bikes in the truck and a day or so later they are in Misano prepping the bike for me. So they definitely deserve applause.”
Leaving Misano with a similar positive feeling, Rea beamed over how productive the test was, at a circuit in which he took the double victory last season. With some alternative chassis balance set-ups tested, it allowed the Northern Irishman to head to circuits with more of an option of how best to ride the bike around each circuit.
Setting consistent lap times over the two days, Rea is confident ahead of Round Seven: “It was a valuable test and the weather was amazing on both days, meaning we were able to complete a lot of laps. We had no new items to confirm so we used the time evaluating different chassis balance set-ups and gathering a lot of information which will be useful in future races. It seemed that the track was in great shape and we were able to be fast with various set ups, so our bike is working in a larger window than previous visits to Misano. All in all, I really enjoyed riding the bike and we have been super-consistent so I'm excited to return to race in a few weeks. I would like to thanks all my crew for working so hard under hot conditions.”
Kawasaki Racing Team will now have a two week break, along with the rest of the WorldSBK paddock, before returning to Misano from 16th – 18th of June as the paddock takes on Round Seven. This can all be followed live on the WorldSBK VideoPass.