21 October 2013 Sykes the SBK World Champion for Kawasaki

Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team) took his first Superbike World Championship title on Sunday 20 October and became the first Kawasaki rider to take the top prize in production-based racing since Scott Russell in 1993.

Sykes knew that at the test track of most of his rivals he would have his work cut out to win but he also knew that he did not have to take race victories to take the championship title.

In race one Tom rode to a solid third place and in doing so he took a large enough advantage to make his championship win safe. He received his trophy for the title win after this race but he still had a second 21-lap race, in warm conditions, to complete.

Tom gathered his concentration and pushed on to lead 13-laps of the second race and finished second in the race, with a final championship advantage of 23 points. Tom also took the new lap record at Jerez today with a 1’41.691 in race two. Sykes also led for 255 laps over the whole season, more than twice the total of the next best rider.

The championship win was particularly sweet for the entire Kawasaki Racing Team as they missed out on the title with Tom by only half a point in 2012. In the 2013 season Tom has scored nine race wins, 18 podiums of all kinds, eight pole positions and 13 fastest laps.

Although Loris Baz (Kawasaki Racing Team) did not race today he finished the championship in 8th place.

Mark Aitchison (Kawasaki Team Pedercini) made great improvements at this round, finishing tenth in race one and ninth in race two, for 18th in the championship.

Kawasaki Team Pedercini rider Federico Sandi was 16h in race one but fell from contention early in race two, rejoining shortly afterwards to finish 15th. He ended his season 17th overall.

Jeremy Guarnoni (MRS Kawasaki) led a four rider Kawasaki sweep of the Superstock 1000 FIM Cup race at Jerez, winning by 4.315 seconds from Pedercini Kawasaki rider Leandro Mercado, with Team MRS Kawasaki rider Romain Lanusse third. This was Kawasaki's third win in succession and placed Jeremy third in the final championship standings, with Mercado fourth overall. Pedercini Kawasaki rider Alessandro Andreozzi was fourth in the Jerez race.

Tom Sykes: “Words cannot describe how I feel. I am very level headed but since Magny Cours there are moments where my mind started dreaming. When I was dreaming I had goose bumps and it was magical to even dream I could be world champion. But that was maybe 2% of what I am feeling now after winning the title. In race two it was my intention to do well, even though it would be difficult to top race one as all my energy had kind of gone after the first one. I hoped to be closer to the front but I did not expect to win. I think this was just Eugene’s race, although my Ninja ZX-10R was working very well.

All things considered I have to be very happy today. World Champion, podium in the races and it has been an absolute pleasure to race with these guys this year. It was good for the championship that it got decided at the final round again, especially at this beautiful circuit, with these great fans. My team is mostly Spanish so it is a home round for them. The championship win has not fully sunk in yet but it will do soon, I’m sure.”