Tom Sykes says a pair of fourth place finishes in the World Superbike Championship were better than he expected in the difficult conditions, but admitted his frustration at being unable to challenge the leaders in Magny-Cours.

The Kawasaki rider came into the penultimate round of the season with a fairly healthy 31 point advantage, but his failure to to get comfortable in the slippery conditions prevented him from making the most of his record-breaking pole position.

Inheriting fourth place in race one by virtue of team orders employed by Kawasaki, who instructed Loris Baz to allow him through, Sykes proceeded to finish in the same position in race two after losing out to Leon Haslam late on.

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The first time in 2014 that he has finished off the podium at a WSBK round, Sykes has seen his advantage heading into the Qatar title showdown finale whittled down to 12 points. Nonetheless, while he was disappointed with the outcome, he says he got the best from the situation.

"In race one that was the limit. I wanted to go faster but unfortunately we have had some limitations for some time in wet conditions and we cannot just quite get to where we need to be. For race two we were also restricted by conditions.

"It was a big shame because we know I can go much, much faster. Given the conditions these results are better than I expected, so there is one bonus. I wanted to fight with Sylvain and win the race but first I needed to finish the race.

"It could have been a lot worse but it could have been better. We are still in the best position in the championship so we need to go to Qatar and hopefully it lives up to its reputation as a desert and we will come out swinging."