Tom Sykes is a
motorcycleroad racer born 19th August 1985 in Huddersfield, Yorkshire, England. In 2008 he joined the Rizla Suzukiteam, after success on a semi-works Honda in 2007.
He raced in the British Supersport championship from 2003 to 2006, finishing as runner-up to
Cal Crutchlowin the last of these.
2007 was his first season in the
British Superbikechampionshiph, riding for the Stobart Vent-Axia Hondateam alongside 2003 series champion Shane Byrne. He finished 18 of the first 20 rounds, including a pair of 4th places at Snetterton[http://www.insidebikes.com/racing/bsb/results/results_detail.asp?id=7453] and .second on the grid at Oulton Park[http://londonbikers.com/news/4062/tom-sykes-rocks-to-front-row-start] , and pole at Donington Park[http://www.bikesportnews.com/news/donbsbquali.html] . Sykes took his first two podiums at the Croftcircuit, to move up to 6th in the championship, immediately behind Byrne, and immediately ahead of Leon Camieron another Honda.
Shortly after joining Rizla Suzuki, he tested a Suzuki MotoGP bike. [http://www.crash.net/motorsport/bsb/news/156958-0/qa_tom_sykes_-_exclusive.html] In 2008 he took pole position at
Oulton Park. He crashed at the aborted start of race 1, but finished 5th on the restart [http://www.motorcyclenews.com/MCN/sport/sportresults/mcn/2008/may/5-11/may0508oultonparkbsbraceoneshanebyrnewinsbattlewithleonhaslam/] . He led race 2 until being taken out by Leon Haslam, who was excluded for the move. He scored his first two victories at Oulton Parkin July, taking the lead from James Ellisonlate in race 1 but leading most of race 2. He won the
Sykes made his
World Superbike Championshipdebut at Brands Hatchas a wildcard, impressing by qualifying sixth (ahead of three works Suzukis with more powerful engines, including title contender Max Neukirchner). He retired from a strong position in race 1 with a holed radiator, but finished 6th in race 2. His second wildcard meeting at Donington Parkin changeable conditions, was even stronger. He again qualified on the second row, but got a flying start in race one and had a comfortable lead when the race was red-flagged due to oil from Noriyuki Haga's Yamaha. Knowing he had to finish within 4 seconds of Troy Baylissto win on aggregate, Sykes lead early in race two, before easing off after seeing a white flag with a red cross. In BSB races this indicates the deployment of the safety car, however in WSBK it merely means slippery surface. The time he and Leon Haslamlost here proved costly, as Sykes failed to stay close enough to Bayliss, finishing second behind the three-time series champion. He was less competitive in race two, but his reputation had still been boosted.
On 11 September 2008 it was reported that Sykes has signed a contract with the Yamaha WSBK team for the 2009 season. [http://www.carolenash.com/insidebikes/bike-news/sykes-signs-yamaha-wsb-deal.htm]
His girlfriend is named Amie. He loves coffee and coffee bars
* [http://www.rizla-suzuki.co.uk/pages/common/crescent.aspx?pg=191 Profile at Rizla Suziki website]
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