WSBK

KRT Duo Aim To Return To Winning Ways At Assen

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With four of the first six races in the 2016 FIM Superbike World Championship won by the combination of KRT competitors Jonathan Rea and Tom Sykes the goal for this coming weekend at Assen is to take full points scores once again.

So far in 2016 Jonathan Jonathan Rea has won three races on the latest Ninja ZX-10R, helping put him in a clear championship lead, by 26 points. Third overall in the rankings is Buriram race two winner Tom Sykes, who is only three points from Chaz Davies in second place.

In terms of previous results at the iconic Assen circuit Rea‰Ûªs pair of successes last season gave him his sixth and seventh wins in the Netherlands, making ‰Û÷JR‰Ûª the second most successful rider in the history of WorldSBK competition at the famous ‰Û÷TT‰Ûª Circuit.

‰ÛÏAssen is a good circuit for me and our bike works quite well there," Jonathan Rea revealed.

"We learned many things in Motorland Aragon during round three, mostly that the base set-up we found with the previous bike worked quite well with the new bike. Hopefully the weather can be consistent throughout the weekend at Assen so we can build a rhythm and some consistency in our package - and with my riding as well.

"We did a good job in Motorland but we need to start getting back to winning ways again. We could be in for a great season especially as we are entering Assen, a track I enjoy racing at. I have no idea why I go so well there but I really enjoy the place. It is a real riders track that - when your bike set-up is not working just perfectly - you can still make a difference.

"There are a lot of corners there that require different techniques than just the finding the brake point, apex and exit. There is quite a lot of technique to Assen. I also think it is just experience of the track," Rea concluded.
Tom Syjes
Tom Sykes has also been successful at Assen in the past, winning the first race of the day during the 2013 Dutch event, before going on to win the championship itself for KRT later that same year.

"Assen is a track where we have had success in the past and had good speed and consistency. We know after Motorland Aragon we have some work to do," Sykes said.

"My crew chief Marcel and I have had some quite lengthy conversations, and we will see how it goes this weekend, but all-in-all I have certainly had a stronger start to the championship than I had last year. Everything feels quite positive. There are a couple of things on the set-up that we need to improve but these are things we can work on in the near future.

"Assen is a track that, as a rider, is always a great pleasure to ride around. It is quite special because you have banked corners with positive camber, so it is always that little bit extra special. We have good points of reference from previous visits and I think the whole Kawasaki Racing Team can have a potentially good race weekend," Sykes concluded.

Reigning champion Rea approaches his happiest of hunting grounds with 32 career race victories and a total of 71 podium finishes to his credit. Sykes has 27 career race wins and 68 podiums to date.

After the Dutch adventure the WorldSBK paddock moves to the very different host venue of Imola, in Italy, for the fifth round of the championship, between 29 April and 1 May.

Main Photo: Jonathan Rea
The KRT duo have been this close for a good percentage of the season so far.

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