Spies takes Assen in his stride The Yamaha World Superbike Team got down to business as usual on the first day of qualifying in Assen today with star rider Ben Spies proving yet again that a lack of track knowledge wasn't going to stop him ...
Spies takes Assen in his stride
The Yamaha World Superbike Team got down to business as usual on the first day of qualifying in Assen today with star rider Ben Spies proving yet again that a lack of track knowledge wasn't going to stop him being fastest man in the paddock. The American hotshot ended both the free practice and the qualifying session top of the time-sheets, laying down consistently fast laps from the word go.
Team-mate Tom Sykes was consistent in both sessions but was still working through some small issues with the team to be able to get up to his American counterpart's pace. A small crash at the very end of the qualifying on a new set of tyres resulted in no injuries for the British rider.
Ben Spies, Yamaha World Superbike Team (1st 1'38.747)
"It was a good session, we did half a race stint at the beginning on race tyres that already had ten laps on from free practice and were only a few tenths off the fastest time from the race last year over race distance so I was really happy. We then put some fresh race tyres on and the times just dropped dramatically and it seemed to come pretty easily. The bike's working really well, there are a couple of things we still need to dial in but the track's great and I'm having fun with it."
Tom Sykes, Yamaha World Superbike Team (15th 1'39.899)
"I've got a couple of little problems which I feel are restricting me. I really want to pull the trigger and go but until we get to the bottom of these it's a little bit tricky. I had a couple of problems with the front, and not been able to push that last little bit to make the difference round every corner. At the end I went into turn one, and thought I was doing everything right but just went down. It wasn't a big one though, so looking forward to tomorrow. We've gathered a lot of information today so hopefully we can put it to good use in the morning.
Massimo Meregalli, Yamaha World Superbike Team Manager
"It was a great day, neither of the riders knew the circuit but it seems this is not a problem for them. Ben led the first free practice and he's also led the second qualifying practice which is great and the bike is working well for him. Tom fell at the end of the qualifying practice when he went out on a fresh set of tyres, looking for a good lap for the end of the session. I think his pace is good so let's wait until tomorrow, we'll check some data tonight and in the morning we'll do something to improve."