AFTER his recent renaissance Huddersfield rider Tom Sykes admitted he came back to earth with a bump at World Superbike round eight at Brno.
After an indifferent start to his third full-time season in the WSBK ranks, after a change of machinery in the close season, ‘the Grinner’ has been smiling in recent rounds.
In rounds five to seven Sykes easily exceeded his points tally from the opening four rounds – 34 playing 42, despite having one less opportunity to accrue them.
A secret-new approach to race weekends was credited by Sykes for the upsurge in results but it deserted him on race day in the Czech Republic.
Sykes had fought his way to an impressive eighth in qualifying, but he could only turn that into finishes of 10th and 14th in the races.
But after the highs of recent weeks Sykes admitted his race-day struggles were no surprise to him.
“I knew it would not be the easiest of weekends, but when it came to qualifying, with fresh tyres, I could make it count,” said Sykes.
“I’m far from happy with the results, as I am sure most of the team are. We got on the second row, which is what we are aiming for each time but in the races – we did not think they would be quite that hard.
“The Brno circuit was not going to suit the problems we are experiencing on the bike set-up and I cannot ride how I want to.”
Sykes’ disappointing points haul of eight at Brno – his worst return since round three at Assen, Holland on April 17 – saw him drop a place down the standings to 14th.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom for Sykes, with British counterpart Jonathan Rea in tenth place only ten points clear of Sykes.
And despite his disappointment on race day Sykes admitted he wouldn’t be getting too down on himself with the home round at Silverstone next up on his schedule.
“We are all in it together in the team,” he added. “I’m not going to let it knock my confidence.”
WSB races will be shown on British Eurosport, with all European rounds in HD. British Eurosport – Sky channel 410 & Virgin Media 521. Eurosport HD is on Sky 412 & Virgin Media 522. Watch races live online at www.eurosportplayer.co.uk