Sykes Escapes SP1 on Path to Misano Pole

Tom Sykes made history on Saturday at Misano, becoming the first rider in World Superbike history to take pole position despite starting out in Superpole 1. The Yorkshireman was forced into action a little earlier than usual after finishing combined practice in eleventh but found his best form when it mattered most, claiming his 27th career pole.

Predictably, Sykes cruised through the opening session with a 1:34.486, half a second clear of Ayrton Badovini, but his success in SP2 came as a bigger surprise.  The Kawasaki rider shaved a quarter of a second off his SP1 time to see off the Aprilia of Leon Haslam who re-established his superiority over the returning Max Biaggi.

After lacking pace in the free practice sessions, Sykes admitted he wasn’t heading into Superpole with high hopes but admitted the extra outing may have worked in his favour.

“I am a little bit surprised to win Superpole because I was not sure if my lap was good enough. But it was, so for this I am happy. I used a race tyre, then a qualifier in Superpole 1 and finally we had to do three fast laps on the front tyre. I did a 1’34.9 on a race tyre at one stage but the front tyre had already done ten laps. The new track surface is good and the circuit is faster, and a better camber in some areas. We have had a good way of working through the weekend but we had to try a couple of different things and they did not work out. We got caught out because we did not put a fresh tyre in during practice to check our performance over one lap. In a way it was good to do Superpole 1 because I got three extra flying laps in. At this level it gives you a bit more understanding, especially on fresh tyres.”

Davide Giugliano ensured three different manufacturers would be represented on the front row by qualifying third while championship leader Jonathan Rea pulled a 1:34.459 out of the bag on his final lap to salvage fourth. His improvement relegated Max Biaggi to fifth with practice pacesetter Jordi Torres in sixth.

Alex Lowes will start seventh for Suzuki ahead of the BMW of Badovini and the leading Honda of Sylvain Guintoli. Michele Pirro, in for the injured Luca Scassa, qualified an excellent tenth ahead of regular Ducati rider Chaz Davies who suffered a gear sensor problem which kept him back in eleventh.



166. Tom SykesKawasakiKawasaki Racing Team1:34.214SP2
291. Leon HaslamApriliaAprilia Racing Team – Red Devils1:34.426SP2
334. Davide Racing – Ducati SBK Team1:34.442SP2
465. Jonathan ReaKawasakiKawasaki Racing Team1:34.459SP2
53. Max BiaggiApriliaAprilia Racing Team1:34.463SP2
681. Jordi TorresApriliaAprilia Racing Team – Red Devils1:34.551SP2
722. Alex LowesSuzukiVoltcom Crescent Suzuki1:34.811SP2
886. Ayrton BadoviniBMWBMW Motorrad Italia SBK1:34.881SP2
91. Sylvain GuintoliHondaPATA Honda World Superbike Team1:35.061SP2
1055. Michele Racing – Ducati SBK Team1:35.139SP2
117. Chaz Racing – Ducati SBK Team1:35.473SP2
1215. Matteo BaioccoDucatiAlthea Racing1:35.862SP2
1336. Leandro MercadoDucatiBarni Racing Team1:35.285SP1
1459. Niccolo CanepaDucatiAlthea Racing1:35.464SP1
1560. Michael van der MarkHondaPATA Honda World Superbike Team1:35.642SP1
1611. Markus ReiterbergerBMWVanZon Remeha BMW1:35.658SP1
1740. Roman RamosKawasakiTeam Go Eleven1:36.205SP1
182. Leon CamierMV AgustaMV Agusta Reparto Corse1:36.247SP1
1914. Randy de PunietSuzukiVoltcom Crescent Suzuki1:36.262SP1
2044. David SalomKawasakiTeam PederciniNo TimeSP1
2151. Santiago BarraganKawasakiGrillini SBK Team1:38.523FP3
2245. Gianluca VizzielloKawasakiGrillini SBK Team1:38.675FP3
2323. Christophe PonssonKawasakiTeam Pedercini1:38.931FP2
2475. Gabor RizmayerBMWBMW Team Toth1:39.792FP3
2510. Imre TothBMWBMW Team Toth1:41.415FP3