This weekend SHARK-men were in action in Austin, Texas for the MotoGP, Moto2 and Moto3 championships along with the World Superbike and World Supersport races taking place in Aragon, Spain.
In Spain the reigning SBK champion Tom Sykes stormed to victory winning both Superbike races and set a new lap record in the first race, on lap two, of 1’57.664 seconds. Fellow SHARK-man and Sykes’s team-mate, Loris Baz finished both races just behind Sykes in second place. Meanwhile Sylvain Guintoli was in the points in both races finishing race one in sixth place and the second in fourth. Rookie Alex Lowes scored valuable points in race one with a 10th place finish, but his luck ran out in the second race after a high-side on the second lap caused him to crash out unhurt.
Meanwhile in World Supersport Lorenzo Zanetti got his season started with a fourth place finish after injury prevented his own participation in the opening race at Phillip Island six weeks ago.
In America for the MotoGP championship Aleix Espargaro finished in ninth place and rookie Scott Redding’s race came to a premature end when a rapidly deteriorating front tyre caused him to crash out in the closing stages of the race.
In Moto2 Sam Lowes finished just outside the points in 16th position. Lowes was unfortunately caught up in an opening lap incident, which caused him to crash, but he was able to restart the race in 33rd position. Cutting his way back through the field Lowes managed to work back up the places and crossed the line in 16th place.
This weekend the first round of the British Superbike Championship will take place at Brands Hatch, 18-21 April.
It was very important to put in this kind of performance after the first weekend in Phillip Island. We scored two race wins today but after four or five laps of race two it felt far from perfect! Race one was very good and we had a good set-up that gave us a consistent pace on a cold track. I was expecting more of a drop off in that race but it was good to the end. I thought race two was going to be more straightforward in hot conditions so I went for the same SC0 as race one. There was a change in temperature in race two on the starting grid and I had to dig extra deep and try to make the best of the changing situation. It was great racing and good for the spectators!
I’m happy with my pace over the weekend and the race was mega, it was just unfortunate I was taken out in turn one, but that’s racing. Without the incident and looking back at my times, I think I could have managed a top six finish again. My best lap of the whole weekend was on the final lap of the race and to comeback from 33rd to finish in 16th is a huge positive! I have lots to take away with me from the weekend; it’s been a big learning curve. Roll on Argentina and another new challenge!