Tom Sykes has completed his third test onboard the all new 2011 Kawasaki ZX-10R in Valencia. The 25 year old has already ridden the bike at Autopolis in Japan and Almeria in Spain before the two day Valencia test.
Despite hot 40+ degree track temperatures Sykes set impressive 1m 34s lap times on new race tyres, which compare very favourably to his lap times in this years race in April where he posted a 1.34.894 on a qualifying tyre and a best race lap of 1.36.077.
Track conditions at Valencia can vary lap times dramatically, but the team claim that during race simulations their race pace was in the mid 1.35’s.
Sykes said: “The track was hot but we got some good information. We’ve made small changes since I rode the bike in Japan and the feeling is positive. It’s still really early days for us and we still need a lot more time under our belt but it’s good to be where we’re at because we know that there is still a big step to come.”
Sykes was joined by current factory Kawasaki WSS rider Katsuaki Fujiwara at Valencia.
“It was good to have Katsuaki there. He’s a rider with a lot of experience and when you’re at this stage with a new bike it’s a big help to have two guys out there as we can evaluate and test that much more.”
Team Manager Paul Risbridger added: “With the delivery of our second 2011 spec Ninja ZX-10R at Valencia we were able to plan a very full programme for the two days of testing. The team tested several geometry options and worked on the general chassis balance on what was our 2010 nominated test circuit. By mid-morning on day two we had achieved our target 1’34 second lap. The speed and consistency of the all new Ninja ZX-10R has given the team a real buzz, and whilst we have a lot of work ahead of us during the winter we feel we are currently right on schedule in our preparations.”