om got what he wanted from his three-day test at Motorland Aragon proving he is fast and fit to race.
Tom set a best lap time of 1’57.2 but of even greater importance he proved that he had largely recovered from the broken left wrist and three broken ribs he picked up in a crash shortly before the first round of the 2013 World Superbike Championship in Australia in late February. Tom did a high number of laps during this Spanish test, which started on 2 April, working on new components for the chassis and some engine improvements as part of the overall KHI development programme on the official factory Ninja ZX-10R.
The first two days of testing at Motorland were held in dry conditions, with the strong opening day winds reducing on day two. A wet track to start on the final day cut down the available testing time, then track action was halted for the last time just after 3pm, following another bout of rain. The second round of the championship takes place back at Motorland Aragon, with raceday on Sunday 14th April.
“I think that my wrist is about 80% and my ribs 98% back to normal, so that was good. I was able to ride the bike again without too many limitations. We had some rain in the final afternoon but we had already finished just about everything we had wanted to do at the end of the second day. We were going to do a couple of long runs on two different settings today but the rain interrupted that. We have put a lot of laps on our tyres here and we still have all of race weekend to check out the final tyre situation for raceday. This test has also brought us some benefits in performance.”
Crew Chief for Tom Sykes, Marcel Duinker: “It was a good test for us. We tested some things on the chassis and had some engine updates. We found our speed straight away because we know this track so well, and within a few laps Tom was doing low 1’59s. We knew that the weather on the third day might have disturbed our test programme so from the first day onwards we got through all our items. We built our best package to try some long runs on day three but unfortunately we got interrupted a bit by the rain. I believe we are already strong on the chassis and engine so, let’s say, it looks like we got to where I hoped we would.”