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Jack Valentine reflects on superb Oulton Park double

Following Rizla Suzuki's fantastic achievement at the recent round of the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Oulton Park, team manager Jack Valentine has reflected on Tom Sykes' historic double victory.

At Rizla Suzuki's home circuit, Sykes proved his potential by tearing up the form book and claiming back-to-back wins in the afternoon's race schedule. The first race was a lesson in composed riding, with Sykes taking to the front and establishing an unassailable lead, whereas in race two, the youngster demonstrated superb tactical knowledge to edge out close friend Cal Crutchlow.

The two wins represent significant progress for both rider and team, however team manager Jack Valentine knew it was a question of when, not if, Sykes would secure his first wins in Britain's premier class of motorcycle racing.

"Although some people may be surprised at the result at Oulton Park, it didn't come as a shock to me as I know we have a superb team and an outstanding rider," says Jack. "We always approach races with professionalism and confidence, and we're not being arrogant, but we know that we have the potential to win every time we go out.

"I feel that we've had a capable bike all year. Tom had some terrible luck early on in the season with some massive crashes, and it would have been easy for him to push too hard and get stuck in a rut. But he's consistently scored some big points since then, building on his success every time he's gone out, and the result is two wins at our home track and third place in the championship."

With Sykes taking a wildcard for the forthcoming British round of the Superbike World Championship at Brands Hatch on August 3, back-to-back victories is the perfect tonic for him prior to his first foray onto the world stage. Jack believes that his appearance at Brands Hatch will have a positive influence on his domestic form. "We're really looking forward to the World Championship appearance and I think Tom can take a lot from it. It'll be his first experience of Superpole and we've set our target on getting into the top 16 and having a crack at things with the more experienced riders," says the veteran.

"A good run at Brands Hatch, a world-class facility, will set him up well for Knockhill later in August. Tom always goes out to win, and hopefully Oulton Park will be the first of many," he concludes.