Kawasaki’s Tom Sykes Hard on the Gas After Winning SBK Title

Kawasaki Racing's Tom Sykes

2013 World Superbike Title Winner

Kawasaki Racing Team recently released the following feature describing the  2013 World Superbike Champion Tom Sykes hard work after winning the title. From winning the title on Oct. 20 through the FIM Gala in early December, Sykes barely had time to relax.

Ultimate success is the aim of all who get involved in major motorsports championships, and in 2013 Tom Sykes won his first ever World Championship crown, while Kawasaki won their first World Superbike Rider’s Title for 20 years. A great job well done, an honor shared by all involved.

An indication of the extra work and global focus that arrives when championship success brings extra attention can be seen even if we only look at what happened immediately after Sykes took his title.

It went like this…

Sunday, October 20 – Circuito de Jerez, Spain

12:45 World champion after race one!

13:00 Podium ceremony

13:10 Official Dorna TV interview

13:20 Paddock show interview in front of the fans

13:30 Journalist interviews

13:45 Pirelli ‘art painted tyre’ presentation to new champion

14:15 Meeting with team to prepare for second Jerez race

14:30 Motor home to relax for second race

15:00 Ready to rock on track again

15:30 Race 2 starts

16:15 Fireworks & podium ceremony

16:30 TV and paddock show interviews

16:45 Journalist interviews

17:15 Official category winner

17:45 Team picture

17:55 Changes out of leathers

18:00 Official press conference then back to the pit box and some time to relax

20:30 Official FIM prize giving ceremony

21:40 Team Dinner with the Kawasaki family – team, friends and family comprising 82 people in all.

23:30 After-Dinner speeches from Tom, Kawasaki representatives and team members.

00:30 Bedtime in the motor home – no party for Tom as his wife Amie is expecting a baby in a few weeks.

Monday 21st October

10:00 Wake Up

10:30 Team shows him a very busy interview/photo shoot/testing programme

11:00 Short time to relax and prepare

12:15 Meets 14 journalists who have been testing his bike at Jerez

12:30 Interviews for official Kawasaki website story

12:45 TV Interview For KME and KMC

13:00 Lunch

13:20 Changed into leathers again

13:30 Photo session with journalists

13:40 Italian TV interview

13:50 Roadbike Ninja 300 and Ninja ZX-10R track test and pictures.

15:30 Relax

16:00 First official KRT winter test of the 2014 Ninja ZX-10R, already with new parts to try out for the next season!

18:00 Finish testing

19:00 Farewell the team

20:00 Home to UK

This was only the start of his winter testing and PR activities, which this year have become all the more frequent and intense because he is the world champion – and halfway through it all he become a father for the first time as well…

A few days after leaving the final round of the year Sykes was back at Jerez testing, between October 30-31. He did not quite get to test on track at Motorland Aragon in mid-November, as this was when his daughter was born.

On the November 5-6 Tom was the star of the EICMA Motorshow in Milan and played a part in the Kawasaki World Conference press event. On home soil, Sykes attended the NEC show in Birmingham on November 23 in association with Kawasaki UK – and then went back again on November 29 to join the Kawasaki Club Riders Club at their popular event.

He returned to Jerez for a three-day test between November 25-27 (shortly before the off-season test ban started on December 1) to take the fastest lap of all and reconfirm 2014 plans for bike development.

He left from there to go to Monaco for the annual FIM Gala, to collect his world championship medal and certificate from the FIM President. More recently he collected the prestigious Caschi D’Oro (golden helmet) award from Motosprint Magazine in Italy, on December 5, before visiting the Kawasaki factory in Japan shortly afterwards. During his Japanese trip he met the President of the motorcycle division as well as other Kawasaki staff, including the team behind the Ninja ZX-10R roadbike.

A busy schedule all round, you have to agree, with Sykes simultaneously looking forward to some time off from his travels, but he also knows exactly why he has been so busy. Success.

Having narrowly missed out on the championship in 2012, Sykes was happy to have so many things to do in the winter of 2013, after achieving his lifetime’s ambition of becoming SBK champion.

Tom Sykes (Kawasaki Racing Team ZX-10R Superbike) says: “I am very fortune to be the world champion and it is such a fantastic feeling. I got some stats the other day about how we did this year and it makes you feel even more proud of everybody’s achievement.

“With the title comes responsibility; appearances, press activities and so on. Kawasaki won the riders’ title for the first time in 20 years so I have been running around quite a bit! In among all that came the birth of our daughter. So you could say that it has been a very busy time. I am making the most of it because last year I lost by half a point, so I would much rather do all the press days that come with winning the championship this year.”

On track, Tom and Kawasaki will get back to business as soon as the testing ban is lifted in mid January, with two European tests scheduled before the 2014 season starts in Australia, on February 23.