Sykes sufferes Dutch setback

25/04 Updated: 02/05 12:20

IT MIGHT have seemed as if everything was conspiring against Tom Sykes at World Superbike round three - but the Leamington rider insists there were still plenty of positives to take away from Holland.

Things were looking good from the outset in Assen for the 26-year-old as he qualified in pole position – his third consecutive in 2012 - and was controlling race one for the first 12 laps.

But with just ten laps to go his radiator holding clip broke and he was forced to pull out with water spewing everywhere, unable to make the re-started nine-lap race eventually won by French rider Sylvain Guintoli.

And things failed to improve in the second race as Sykes was unable to turn yet another pole position start into his first victory of the year, finishing sixth after choosing a harder rear tyre, leaving the Kawasaki rider cursing his luck.

“It was a tricky day but things could have been worse,” he said.

“It is just the way racing goes because we have had good pace all weekend with the ZX-10R and that pole time was very good from qualifying and I was confident that I could build on that.

“In race one we were able to do something from pole but unfortunately we had a small issue with the clip for the radiator hose.

“In race two with many things to consider, we chose a different tyre in the rear, the hard one, and it looked like it cost us a lot of time and caused me a lot of issues.”

Sykes’ ten points keeps him third in the overall standings, 13 points behind new leader Max Biaggi and 12 points adrift of reigning champion Carlos Checa, who no-scored in race two having put his Ducati on the podium in the opener.

And with 11 rounds still to come, Sykes knows there is still plenty to play for and is adamant he will not dwell on his Dutch disappointment.

“We have some very good circuits coming up for our bike and I am still looking forward to it all,” he added.

British Eurosport is the Home of Bikes, showing all MotoGP, World Superbike and British Superbike races on Sky channels 410 and 411 and Virgin Media channels 521 and 525 as well as

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