Kawasaki rider Tom Skyes has conceded to the influence of ever-changing technical rules over his racing style. Sykes faces a short window to re-adjust his plan of attack before the 2017 season starts.
Sykes is known for his hyper-aggressive riding style that has him braking deeper into corners than most would have sense to. This approach has been able to net him a considerable amount of success, but it looks as if he’s finally being forced to shelve the old approach and bring in something new.
Sykes commented recently on the nature of racing a commercially available bike in comparison one that is tailor-made for track, and just how that will influence his performance.
“With the recent technical rules, we have not been as close to what I would class as a racing bike as we had been in some previous years. We have been stepping away from that and I have to say that it is about time that I need to try and adjust myself. I have to understand that it is not a thoroughbred racing bike and I need to adapt myself more to this. That has probably been my biggest struggle for the past couple of seasons. Now it is time to accept that there has to be a compromise.” – Tom Sykes
Sykes fans are sure to rejoice, after some have attributed his incredibly close near-victories to just needing that little extra “umph” to get him across the grid first. Only the 2017 season will tell if Sykes has made enough of an effort to adapt to the limitations.
Personally, Sykes seems to have a smart enough head to know when to stop plumbing the depths for diminishing returns and focus on a new path. Let’s hope he can get a firm grasp on a style more suited to his bike.