Sykes Paces Tight Assen Superbike Practice

Tom Sykes was fastest in World Superbike practice Friday at TT Circuit Assen. (WorldSBK Photo)

ASSEN, Netherlands – Tom Sykes put BMW Motorrad on top of the World Superbike practice charts Friday at TT Circuit Assen.

Sykes, the 2013 World Superbike champion, put the new BMW S1000RR raced to the top of the charts with a 1:35.414. Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea was second fastest, but was only .003 of a second off Sykes’ best time.

It was a BMW/Kawasaki party at the top of the practice charts. Third belonged to the second Kawasaki entry of Leon Haslam, while the second BMW entry of Markus Reiterberger was fourth fastest.

Michael can der Mark was fifth fastest for Pata Yamaha, while championship leader Alvaro Bautista of Ducati timed in sixth fastest Friday afternoon. The top-five riders were separated by .031 of a second.

Chaz Davies, the second Ducati rider, was involved in a small crash at turn five but was uninjured and returned to the pits unscathed aboard his bike. The second Pata Yamaha rider Alex Lowes also crashed and ended the day 10th overall.

The top-12 riders were separated by less than a second.