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Fierce fire: Tom Sykes crashes in Portimao

Saturday, September 16th, 2017 | Sports

16 September 2017 – 11:30 am
The third free practice of the Superbike World Championship in Portimao is overcrowded by a serious crash: Is the championship thus prematurely decided?

Has Kawasaki pilot Tom Sykes been the victim of a technical defect?

© Kawasaki

(cafetheology.org) – A serious crash from Kawasaki factory-run Tom Sykes crossed the third free practice of the Superbike World Championship in Portimao. Sykes lost control of his Kawasaki ZX-10RR in his warm-up, and slammed over the top of the corner before corner 9. The Briton was thrown by the commuting Kawasaki, hit hard and slipped at high speed many meters. The motorcycle went up in flames as the fuel ignited. Sykes remained motionless and was taken to the Medical Center by the medical staff. Thick smoke swarmed the course in the Algarve. The session had to be interrupted after only two minutes of training. It took almost 38 minutes for the third free practice to be restarted. In the remaining minutes, Jonathan Rea pushed himself to the top again. The World Cup leader pulverized his Friday's fastest time and needed 1: 42.054 minutes for the fastest turn. Ducati factory pilot Chaz Davies lost 0.764 seconds on Reas Fabelzeit as second place. Less well was Ducati Markenkollege Marco Melandri, who slipped to position 11 on Friday to the eleventh position.Mar-Agusta-pilot Leon Camier, who could well cover the weaknesses of his F4 well, and as a third place a few prominent names behind remained. Positions four and five went to the two Yamaha drivers Michael van der Mark and Alex Lowes. Stefan Bradl landed again in the top 10, but had just two seconds behind. The championship should be finally decided after Sykes' departure on Saturday morning. The former WSBK World Champion currently separates 70 points from Teamkollege Jonathan Rea. The attending doctors found that Sykes had broken the fifth finger of the left hand. It is not a straight break. The doctors told Sykes not fit.



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