Sykes breaks track record at Motorland Aragon

Tom Sykes wasn't expected to be a contender this year, but he's certainly coming strong out of the gate at the start of the WSBK season.

Tom Sykes has come out of nowhere to be a contender in this year’s World Superbike championship.

Before the start of the season, nobody had Sykes pegged as one of WSBK’s top riders. But this season, he surprised everyone with great times and finishes at Phillip Island (finishing 4th and 3rd in the two races). Now, he’s turning heads at the Aragon testing session.

Four teams participated in a two-day test at the Spanish track last weekend, including Sykes’ Kawasaki Racing Team. Sykes took advantage of the test opportunity to break Carlos Checa’s record lap time at the track, set during last year’s WSBK opener.

Sykes actually beat Checa’s time by 0.4 of a second, but ended up paying a price for his raw speed; later in the tests, he suffered a crash, although he only ended up with a stiff neck and some bruises. He says he’ll be fine by the time the Imola race rolls around on April 1.

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