Leon Haslam says he won't give up his charge for the MCE British Superbike championship title despite slipping off in race one at the season finale to fall 27 points off Shane Byrne with two races remaining.
The JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider had an opening race filled with highs before an ultimate low of high-siding out in the wet in the second restart. With Byrne taking sixth place he has extended his championship advantage by ten points to 27 with a maximum of 50 left to score.
Haslam had battled back from a disaster in qualifying when a broken right handlebar saw him crash out to be restrained to 17th on the initial grid.
After two separate red flags Haslam scythed up the order, and had been running in second before the second red flag stoppage for rain, but his race ended on the opening lap of the second restart when he slipped off at the exit of Druids into Graham Hill bend.
“I feel more gutted than anything right now but I haven't given up,” Haslam said. “I had come back from the crash we had this morning, to be pushing through the pack and was up to second before the rain came.
“On the restart it was tricky and I had a few moments so I eased off a little, but then it obviously wasn't enough as it just threw me off and slapped me down pretty hard. I just feel a bit sore and stiff now so I have got some ice on it and I am going to be ready for tomorrow.”
Haslam was taken to the medical centre as a precaution but after being given the all clear to compete in the final two races the former World Superbike star insists the title is not out of reach despite his challenge getting tougher.
“For me the situation is the same as it was today;” he said. “I have to win both races tomorrow and I have to hope that some of the other guys get between me and Shakey. But we saw today that anything can happen so I certainly haven't given up on the title yet.”