World Superbike Home Race For Tom Sykes As Chris Vermeulen Returns

World Superbike, Donington Park, United Kingdom, 23 March 2011
Tom Sykes and Joan Lascorz will be joined in the official Kawasaki Racing Team this weekend by Chris Vermeulen, as the regular KRT trio get set to meet the challenge of Donington Park in England.

world superbike, 2011 world superbike racing, world superbike racing, kawasaki racing, kawasaki world superbikeChris Vermeulen undertook some track tests recently, in Spain on Monday and then yesterday at Cadwell Park in England, to determine whether or not he could ride at Donington.

The intention now is that Chris will ride as much as he is able to this weekend, including raceday if his knee injury allows.

He will then take part in the full weekend of racing at the next round at Assen on April 17, and should be back to his competitive best at the Monza round, on 8 May.

In his debut World Superbike season Joan Lascorz has had some highs and lows but his long recovery from injury to his arm continues and he expects to be even more competitive than he was at round one in Australia.

He is a big fan of Donington, and like his fellow competitors he will find some changes to the circuit when he takes part in first practice on Friday. Increased runoff, a remodelled Foggy Esses and other detail changes will appear at a circuit that World Superbike last visited in 2009.

The Kawasaki Racing Team effort in Europe is based at the premises of Paul Bird Motorsports (PBM) in Cumbria, England, meaning that most team members – including Sykes – arrive at Donington for the first of two home rounds in the 2011 season.

Tom Sykes: “I’m obviously looking forward to Donington, not just because it is my home round but it is a circuit I really enjoy. We still need to keep working on the development of the bike so going to Donington is probably a good thing. Both the team and myself know what we need to make the bike work well round this track, so that will help us in our development stage. I am more confident this year that we can put on a better show for the British fans. I am very lucky in that I have a good fan base and hopefully I can repay them with something good this weekend. Everybody on the grid is in the same boat and at this time of year it will be cold around Donington. The team and I also have good experience there in a variety of conditions so I am looking forward to it. It is a good track for us at this stage of the new Ninja ZX-10R’s race development.”

Chris Vermeulen: “I will ride to use this weekend but almost as a test at first. From my doctor’s point of view I am improving well, but I should just be increasing my riding step-by-step. I rode yesterday at Cadwell Park in England, did about 30 laps in total on the Ninja ZX-10R, and it felt really good. My speed was OK but I was not going to break any lap records. My knee started to swell up afterwards so we rested it up. We have decided to ride this weekend but to look at it as a test; not only for my knee but to get some information on the bike, to ride the new generation Pirellis and just get out there on track and see how it goes. If it goes well we will race, but at this stage races may be quite difficult.”

Joan Lascorz: “I like Donington and I have good memories of racing there last time when I finished second in the WSS race. It is quite a hard track in terms of the muscle power you have to use to move the bike around, particularly down Craner Curves, and there are also places where you have to use the brakes very hard from high speed. I have been working out a lot physically and my arm is improving every day. The bike is still quite new for me because it was only my third time on the new bike in Australia. So I am looking to Donington to improve settings and feelings on the bike. I have been working hard with my personal trainer and I’m more fit and strong than in Australia. I hope to make another step and be nearer the top riders for the second round. For sure Sykes will be a good reference on this track because is his home and he should go well.”

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