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Valentine takes positives from Thruxton experience

Rizla Suzuki team manager Jack Valentine was positive in his appraisal of the team's performance after the opening weekend of Bennetts British Superike action at Thruxton from April 18 to April 20.

Tom Sykes battled to a sixth place finish in race one, with newcomer to the British scene Atsushi Watanabe down in seventeenth.

After a nasty collision involving Leon Haslam and Karl Harris, Sykes finished race two in one piece, albeit in eighth position. Watanabe showed a marked improvement, crossing the line in fourteenth.

Rizla Suzuki Team Manager Jack Valentine:
"The changes we made to Tom's number two bike following race one made a big difference. It's a shame about the incident with Haslam as I think we would have been on for a strong result. On the restart we stayed with the same rear tyre, Tom got the hole-shot and was having a really good ride. Sadly his rear tyre went off and he dropped down the order. We were hoping for a fourth or fifth place finish but it was so bad he slipped to eighth. We will re-group and fight back at the next round. As for Atsushi I think he did fantastic, he gets faster every time he goes out on track. It is not until you are racing that you really learn the tracks and conditions. He is doing as well as we had hoped and his best lap times would put him within the top ten easily."