Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes is ‘embarrassed’ by his result in the opening Qatar WorldSBK race after a problem with his rear Pirelli have him no grip and the former champion struggled for the whole 17 laps.
Sykes dropped 10 points to rival Chaz Davies as the Welshman put one hand on runner-up spot in the desert with a second-place finish behind runaway winner Jonathan Rea.
“It was a disaster, an embarrassment if I am honest. I was one of those where I started the weekend good, had the technical issue but laptimes have been very consistent all weekend. In the race, I really suffered with the performance of the rear tyre and that’s it,” said Sykes, speaking at the track.
“On the first lap, I was trying to get my head down and follow Jonathan but I knew I was in trouble, no traction on entry, middle or exit, and for that reason the front was on the limit, there was nothing more I could do. After a couple of laps, I dropped into the 1’59s - slower than I was in free practice one - so complete disaster.
“It’s shame, our pace was consistent all weekend. I can pretty much guarantee if I put another rear tyre in it would perform differently. We will look at fine-tuning the bike but there’s no need for big changes.”