SBK Donington Park Race Two: Sykes In Cruise Control


Tom Sykes has opened up a 26 point lead at the top of the Superbike World Championship standings after a crushing victory in race two at Donington Park. Once again, the biggest threat came from Kawasaki teammate Loris Baz but the defending champion proved too strong to complete a second Donington double in as many years.

A leading group of five began to distance themselves from the pack as the race started to settle down but a flashpoint on lap five exploded the race into life. With Sylvain Guintoli leading from Aprilia teammate Marco Melandri, Baz sent in an ambitious move at the Melbourne loop, causing Melandri to back off and fourth-placed Alex Lowes to tailgate the second Aprilia. Both riders waved goodbye to any hopes of a podium while Guintoli was left all alone to defend against the two factory Kawasakis.

On lap eleven, Sylvain’s resistance was finally broken with Baz easing through at the Fogarty esses. Guintoli bravely fought back at the Melbourne loop but his move caused he and his compatriot to lose momentum, opening the door for Sykes to overhaul both of them on the run towards Goddards. From that point on, there was only going to be one winner.

Sykes was that man with Baz completing a perfect day for Kawasaki in second. Guintoli came home a lonely third ahead of Ducati duo Davide Giugliano and Chaz Davies while the PATA Hondas of Jonathan Rea and Leon Haslam finished line astern in sixth and seventh. Toni Elias beat Ayrton Badovini to eighth although with Bimota still ineligible to score points, tenth-placed Alex Lowes will inherit the Italian’s spot after a spirited recovery after his early mishap.