Rizla Suzuki rider John Reynolds was on blistering form as he set the third fastest lap time during today's practice sessions for the eleventh round of the British Superbike Championship at Brands Hatch, while his team-mate for this race Tom Sykes shook up the establishment at his first attempt on a Superbike finishing eleventh.

Reynolds was impressive during both practice sessions as he tested many variations of tyre choice and settled into a comfortable riding position on his Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000. He didn't use a qualifying tyre today and was content to find a good race pace.

"Today was steady away really, we tried a few tyre combinations over quite a few laps to find a good race set-up and I am very happy," commented JR. "Brands Hatch is a fantastic track and one of my favourites.

"We already have a reasonably good base set-up from the long track events earlier in the year and now we have a good race tyre we will look for the final few tenths of a second improvement for tomorrow by adjusting suspension and gearing ratios. I'm looking forward to a great weekend.

"Well done to Tom today. I always thought he had a bit of talent and he is proving it to me and everybody by being so close to the leading times on his first attempt on a Superbike. That is real raw talent pushing him to go that fast and you'll see a lot more of him in the future."

Sykes, the 18-year-old race sensation from Yorkshire, was only three quarters of a second behind the fastest time today despite it being only his first competitive run on a Superbike.

He finished ahead of many more experienced star Superbike riders and by his own admission is still learning the limits of the bike. Sykes completed a mind-boggling 95-laps today as he got to grips with his Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000 that runs the same number 71 as Rizla Suzuki regular rider Yukio Kagayama, who he is standing in for after the Japanese rider broke his pelvis at the previous round of the series at Cadwell Park.

"It has been just awesome today, what a fantastic experience," noted Sykes, "I didn't have too many nerves this morning, I'd decided I was going to go out and enjoy myself and that's exactly what I've done.

"I am getting to grips with the Rizla Suzuki GSX-R1000 and have tested a lot of different seating positions and tyres today. I am pushing quite hard because I have only limited time to get up to race pace and find the best setting on the bike. Tomorrow we will be able to look more at the suspension and at going a bit faster.

"According to Niall Mackenzie, I am going into some corners too quickly and I need to slow down a bit so I can exit faster. He's been a great help and the whole team has been really good to me. Having a good team is half the battle and Rizla Suzuki is just about the best. I'm still glad my Grandad Peter Brook is on the pit wall with my race pit board though, he's enjoying himself."

Racing starts at 1:15pm on Sunday 14th at the Brands Hatch Indy circuit and a huge crowd is expected to attend as the entire circuit can be watched from many vantage points, making it one of the most exciting race weekends of the year for spectators.

 

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