Magny Cours Next Target For Kawasaki’s WSBK Competitors
September 27, 2011
WSBK, Magny-Cours, France, 27 September 2011 - After some recent highs for the official Kawasaki WSBK racing project Tom Sykes and Joan Lascorz will arrive in France knowing that more strong finishes are up for grabs as the 2011 season winds down.
Sykes came within a whisker of a podium place at Imola last weekend and was also unlucky to have to pull out of race two. Lascorz also showed good pace at times in the two Imola races but his qualifying position outside the Superpole 16 ensured he would not be able to mix it with the leading riders at a circuit it was difficult to pass on.
After a win at the Nürburgring for Sykes, and with top five performances having been put in by both Tom and Joan this year, podiums are the aim in each of the 23-lap races in France on Sunday October 2.
In the championship rankings, Tom is currently 12th and Joan 13th, with only two points separating them.
Magny Cours is a very different challenge when compared to the undulating parkland layout of Imola. The French circuit, 4.411km in length, is a regular stop on the WSBK calendar but the spectators will not see Kawasaki World Superbike rider Chris Vermeulen in competition this time around. He now hopes to be fully ready to race at the final round of the year, in Portugal, on October 16.
Roberto Rolfo and Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki Pedercini Team) are also only separated from each other by a small margin in the championship rankings, with ‘Roby’ 18th on 39 points and rookie ‘Atcho’ only one place and three points behind.
Tom Sykes: “Now we have proved we can go well in the wet and we are getting there in the dry, so I am quite happy to go forward to France and pick up where we left off - which is consistently in the top four or five. That is my aim, to be in there in all practices, Superpole and the races. Getting Superpole right at Imola certainly helped us in the races. There is a bit of a difference between Imola and Magny Cours, and there is quite a contrast between the corners in France. The middle sector is not great for a Superbike but it is not a circuit I dislike at all. I am building on our positives and looking forward to this round.”
Joan Lascorz: “Our race pace can be good and it was again at Imola. We can look to that as a positive from last weekend. I hope for better in qualifying so that I can get away with the faster riders. I arrived back home with a desire to leave almost immediately for Magny Cours. I am now just counting the days to the next race. I hope that before the end of the season I can get one really good result. ”