News 25 Feb 2012

Sykes continues form with Phillip Island WSBK pole

Kawasaki Racing Team rider remains on pole as Superpole session is cancelled.

Tom Sykes rode his Kawasaki to pole position at Phillip Island.

Tom Sykes rode his Kawasaki to pole position at Phillip Island.

Kawasaki Racing Team rider Tom Sykes will start from pole position for the third time in his career at the opening round of the year by heading the field after combined qualifying.

Tissot-Superpole today was cancelled after a fatal accident suffered by young Australian Superstock 600 rider Oscar McIntyre in a support race before the session was due to start.

Second on the grid for Sunday’s two 22-lap Superbike races will be Max Biaggi (Aprilia Racing) who was 0.54 seconds behind Sykes. World champion Carlos Checa secured third spot while another Ducati rider, Jakub Smrz on the Liberty Racing machine, completed the front row.

Frenchman Sylvain Guintoli was fifth on his Effenbert Liberty Racing vee-twin, and Leon Camier was sixth on his Crescent Fixi Suzuki. Niccolò Canepa (Red Devils Roma Ducati) was an impressive top seven qualifier, with the last place on row two being taken by Honda World Superbike official rider Jonathan Rea.

Leading Australian was Bryan Staring in 18th for Pedercini Kawasaki, while Josh Brookes was 22nd, Mark Aitchison 23rd and David Johnson 25th.

Meanwhile, in World Supersport, Broc Parkes (Ten Kate Racing Products Honda) secured the first pole of the season, the 15th of his career, on his Honda CBR600RR with a 1:34.445 second lap, set this afternoon in the final qualifying session.

On the combined qualifying sheets a late charge from Bogdanka PTR Honda rider Sam Lowes made sure he would lead Frenchman Jules Cluzel (PTR Honda) making it three CBR riders in the top three places.

Kawasaki riders monopolised the next three spots, with Kenan Sofuoglu (Kawasaki DeltaFin Lorenzini), Fabien Foret (Kawasaki Intermoto Step) and Sofuglu’s team-mate Sheridan Morais completing the top six grid places.

Italian rider Alex Baldolini (Power Team by Suriano Triumph) was seventh and the second row of the grid was completed by Balazs Nemeth (Racing Team Toth). Jed Metcher will start from 17th on the grid.

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