Tom Sykes is well placed to take advantage of his rivals' misfortune after claiming a somewhat unexpected fifth World Superbike pole position of the season at Misano.
The Kawasaki rider came into Saturday having struggled with the high temperatures of Friday, but the use of the qualifying tyre in Superpole would yet again transform the ZX-10R into an unbeatable package in Sykes's hands.
Recovering from an earlier moment in SP1, Sykes would storm to pole position by a clear seven tenth margin, marking the fifth time in seven attempts that he has started from the front of the grid this year.
With key rivals Max Biaggi, Marco Melandri and Carlos Checa
starting down in 10th, 13th and 16th, Sykes says he is 'pretty happy' with the set-up of his Kawasaki.
“It looks like the qualifying tyres change the balance of the bike and we have been working in a similar set-up direction all weekend. So it looks like when we get to qualifying the softer tyres really benefit our package. It is really valuable information and the data is something we can use to build on for the future. I used all but one of the five available rear tyre options they have here, maybe saving one to try tomorrow.
“I am quite happy with two of the tyres for race use right now so let's see what tomorrow's track conditions bring. I had a big moment at the end of Superpole one when I think I hit a little puddle of water on the rumple strip and the back end stepped out. There was no mistake on my part but just a bit of a puddle of water. I managed to hold tight on the handlebars and got through the moment OK.”