Donington Park Circuit
The BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team took to the Donington Park Circuit with positive energy, following a successful maiden podium of 2019 in Misano just fortnight ago. The morning’s FP1 session was extremely hot for the UK, allowing Sykes and replacement rider Peter Hickman to work on set-up and try different configurations. The pair had a good session with Tom Sykes topping the timings in P1 and Hickman respectively in P9 whilst lapping his fastest lap around the 4.02Km circuit (1’28.974)
In the afternoon’s FP2 session the emphasis was to build on a good race pace for Tom, whilst on the other side of the garage Hickman worked on getting his BMW S 1000 RR adjusted to suit him with only having ridden the bike for one session. Tom Sykes got faster and faster throughout the afternoon setting the quickest lap a few minutes before the end of the session and holding onto 1st place overall. Meanwhile Peter Hickman was able to improve on his FP1 timing to go -0.300 tenths faster putting him in P12 on combined times.
With Tom Sykes dominating day one here at Donington Park it puts the BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team in good stead heading into qualifying as they hope to push for the first pole of the season.
Shaun Muir – Team Principal
“A fantastic day. Tom was P1 in the first session and by a good margin, he then followed it up in FP2 to stay top, however didn’t get the best use of his second tyre so the gap did close up but happy with the progress made by the guys today. Tomorrow we will look to consolidate his position, we will make a few changes going into FP3 overnight and hopefully bag a front row start and a pole position.
On the other side of the garage it’s an absolute revelation. Pete Hickman’s jumped on the bike for the first time and gone the fastest he’s ever gone around Donington Park on his first exit. He’s made good progress in each session, hasn’t done anything drastic and looks to be enjoying his riding. So overall very happy with Pete who is exceeding our expectations so far this weekend”.
Tom Sykes (GBR)
“This has been coming, we’ve been building and building and in Misano I feel we didn’t get what we deserved because we had three podiums in us. Coming into Donington its really a circuit of two halves, there’s four sectors and the first two sectors you need one bike and in the last two you need a completely different one… but after the first run this morning I came in and said the boys they’ve done a great job in getting the bike well balanced to suit the track, so a big thanks to the whole BMW Motorrad WorldSBK Team.
We made a few changes in FP2 in preparation and I didn’t really have to go chase a lap time which is positive. I feel sooner or later we will add to the “49 superpoles” tally and tomorrow we will have a good go at it”.
Peter Hickman (GBR)
“I’m happy enough with today. It’s all new however the bike feels fairly similar to what I’m running in BSB. We have a lot more adjustability on this bike along with the electronics so it’s a lot different in some areas. I’m really happy to get into the 1’28’s this afternoon, it’s the fastest I’ve been around here with a 1’28.567, so half a second faster and I’m looking towards the top 6….so I’ve got to be happy with the progress on day 1.
Tomorrows a different day, I’ve not rode on the ‘Q’ tyre in a long time as we don’t run that in BSB so that’s going to be interesting, I don’t have an aim as such but I’m just going to keep chipping away and let’s see how our lap time goes and where we end up in the race”.