Tom Sykes believes BMW’s haul of five WorldSBK podiums in 2021, which have all come in the wet, are due to having riders that can make up for the bike’s limitations.

This comes after Michael Van Der Mark backed up his wet Superpole race win in Portimao with third last Sunday in Mandalika. 

The other three podiums all came at Donington Park earlier in the year as Sykes claimed a second and third in damp conditions, while Van Der Mark joined him on the podium with third in the ten lap Superpole race. 

In the dry, BMW have consistently been behind Yamaha, Kawasaki and Ducati in 2021, which is why Sykes was asked whether BMW have an advantage in the wet given their recent results.

However, Sykes put it down to having ‘good riders’ as opposed to the German manufacturer having a better equipped bike for those above-mentioned conditions. 

"BMW being good in the wet? Simple answer, I think good riders can get around some of the bike’s limitations and get closer to where we deserve to be," Sykes. 

"Obviously, in the dry conditions you can’t ride around the problems as much, but today I think it was a slightly different approach from the two BMW riders and it’s great, I’m happy for Michael [Van Der Mark] because it’s a result he deserves."

Last Sunday’s double-header was Sykes’ last for the team, while also likely to be his last in the world championship. 

The 2013 world champion will be ending a two-year stint with BMW, and although 2021 was his best campaign out of the two, it’s a season that ‘was bittersweet’ after missing several rounds due to concussion.

Sykes added: "I would say it’s a season of two halves and one that was bittersweet. I just have to say that it is what it is. 

"I think things during the season were complicated, we had to try and develop and race at the same time which is quite a tricky task. 

"Normally in this level of racing you need to focus on race set-up, but unfortunately I was caught out by some decision making late on in the year in August, and obviously from there it left it with a little bit of a sour taste. But overall, you can still look at it with some positives."