Rea: "I want to finish the season strong"

Tuesday, 31 October 2017 14:30 GMT

Eyes on the prize for the final round for the Kawasaki Racing Team

With the sun about to set on what has been another phenomenal season for the Kawasaki Racing Team, their work isn’t over yet as Jonathan Rea (Kawasaki Racing Team) and Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) have their sights set firmly on taking the desert by storm this weekend for the Acerbis Qatar Round.

Heading to a circuit in which Rea it yet to win around, he hopes to secure another strong weekend on board his ZX-10RR but notes that he will be satisfied with the outcome of the season as a whole. Already in the frame of mind to think about the 13th and final round of the season, the Northern Irishman notes the importance of the track conditions as he could potentially break the record for the most points scored in one season.

Looking forward to the round ahead, Rea explains: “Reflecting on Jerez last time out it was an amazing weekend. It has always been a good circuit for us during the winter tests but this year we managed to be really strong all weekend in the races. This has given us good momentum to take into Qatar. This is the last round and I want to finish well. I enjoy the atmosphere there as it is a chilled out paddock and the night time race adds a bit of excitement between the riders and teams. The layout suits me and there are a lot of high speed corners there. It is important to maximise the grip as the track is in the middle of the desert and early in the weekend there is not so much rubber down. So we need to pay attention to that. I want to keep an eye on the long game and finish the season strong. Whatever happens, I think we can be satisfied with the job this year.”

British team-mate Tom Sykes is gunning for the runner up spot in the championship standings, as he heads to Qatar joint on points with Chaz Davies ( Racing – Ducati). With his fitness continuing to improve, Sykes looks forward to taking on the 5.3km circuit as it’s a circuit which suits his riding style. Hoping the set-up of his Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR will be able to easily adapt to the track, the 32 year old is set for a strong battle under the floodlights.

“This is the final round of the year”, begins Sykes. “And the season has passed by almost without realising it in some ways. My hand is feeling better than it did in Jerez where all those many changes of direction meant things were not ideal. I was still not fully myself at Jerez but I am looking forward to the last races. Losail is a lovely venue and I really enjoy riding at night under the lights. I also enjoy the general layout and the weekend timetable. In the final round we will try to get the bike settings to suit my riding style in the best way possible. I have gone quite a way to try and change my riding style to suit the changes that came in this year. In Qatar we will see if we can get the bike set-up to do the rest. Right now we’re working toward making sure we take the runner up slot in the final championship standings.”

Follow all Kawasaki Racing Team’s progress and see if Rea can break the points record or if Sykes can take the runner up spot in the championship, at the Acerbis Qatar Round all with the WorldSBK VideoPass.