Tom Sykes says “being pissed off is an understatement” after his frustrating race weekend at his home round Donington Park which saw him lose ground to his World Superbike championship rivals.

Having started the race weekend brightly by taking the outright World Superbike pole record with his 44th career Superpole – surpassing Troy Corser’s all-time record – Sykes battled to third place in race one after a feisty tussle against teammate Jonathan Rea.

Looking to make progress in race two, Sykes struggled to carve up the order on the reverse grid from seventh to gain just one place by the finish having been stuck behind Milwaukee Aprilia’s Lorenzo Savadori for the middle third of the race.

Sykes blames his Kawasaki package which isn't suiting his riding style, an issue which has hampered the British rider in recent months, and has called for extensive set-up changes to spark a turnaround at the next round in Brno.

“I don’t think we’ve got the package underneath me at the moment to show my full potential,” Sykes said. “We can still collect the Superpoles and make fast laps which is a main thing but I am not able to get the best from the bike which is what is very frustrating at this moment.

“Riding around today I was so disappointed and frustrated. I felt like a rookie again as I couldn’t get the bike into the corner, through or even on the exit.

“To say I am pissed off is an understatement. I said to Marcel that I’m angry and I don’t understand why the bike isn’t doing what I want it to do.”



With speculation pointing to Sykes making a move to Yamaha next year, while maiden double winner Michael van der Mark is rumoured to be trading places by switching to Kawasaki, the 2013 World Superbike champion doesn’t want his current frustrations to dictate his future but has pressed home his demand for change.

“I know what I am capable of and I’ve got the potential to be winning races every weekend,” Sykes said. “That is not a doubt in my mind but you need to be able to do things and in this moment the Kawasaki is more favourable to a different kind of riding style.

“In my opinion that is not the best kind of racing style. We are working hard and I will continue to fight for the race win and try to improve the package underneath me.”

Sykes has slipped to fourth place in the World Superbike riders' championship having seen van der Mark draw level on points but classified ahead due to his bigger wins tally in 2018.


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