Tom Sykes fastest at Brands Hatch BSB test

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WSB star Tom Sykes was the quickest rider during the Brands BSB test yesterday (Tuesday).

The Kawasaki factory rider was having a run-out to try some different settings ahead of this weekend’s Assen World round and set a best time of 45.6 – just 0.1 slower than Ryuichi Kiyonari’s pole time of last year and only 0.2s off the outright lap record set by Gregorio Lavilla on a Dunlop-shod Ducati.

Fastest of the BSB riders were John Hopkins and Jon Kirkham who both lapped with a succession of low 46s – both setting a best of 46.1 on their Samsung Suzukis.

But Hopkins’s time should issue a warning to his rivals. His GSX-R1000 was plagued by a misfire in the morning so he only had the three afternoon sessions to learn the track – as well as post a time!

Michael Rutter was only 0.1s off the pace of the Suzukis – his Ducati now with a full race engine as well as the ride by wire electronics.

Josh Brookes was still doing a lot of back-to-back testing with his two Relentless Suzukis and clocked the same time at Rutter – as did Gary Mason on the MSS Kawasaki that now has a full superbike-spec engine. He previously tested with a superstock engine.

Team-mate Easton was only three tenths off Mason’s pace, but his 46.5 was matched by Tommy Bridewell before his Tyco Honda engine seized – the second engine failure the team has suffered in testing with the ex-HM Plant Hondas.

Chris Walker also clocked a 46.5, an impressive first run on the Pr1mo Kawasaki and despite being laid low by a stomach bug!

Worth noting also that Howie Mainwaring clocked a best time of 46.5 on his ZX-10  an impressive performance by the MSS Kawasaki National Superstock rider.

Testing continues tomorrow at Snetterton – the first time BSB superbikes will be on the new circuit.

HM Plant Honda, Swan Yamaha, Motorpoint Yamaha and Honda, and Buildbase BMW join the fray. And the big plus point for fans is that admission is free.  

Unofficial times

Tom Sykes, PBM Kawasaki, 45.6
John Hopkins, Samsung Suzuki, 46.1
Jon Kirkham, Samsung Suzuki, 46.1
Michael Rutter, Rapid Solicitors Ducati, 46.2
Josh Brookes, Relentless Suzuki 46.2
Gary Mason, MSS Kawasaki, 46.2
Stuart Easton, MSS Kawasaki, 46.5
Tommy Bridewell, Tyco Honda, 46.5
Chris Walker, Pr1mo Kawasaki, 46.5
Martin Jessop, Rapid Solicitors Ducati,46.6
Peter Hickman, Tyco Honda 46.7
Patrick Muff, Tyco Honda, 47.7
Steve Brogan, Jentin Honda, 48.0

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Gary Pinchin

By Gary Pinchin