Leon Haslam has conceded Shane Byrne was a worthy winner of the 2016 MCE British Superbike crown after suffering his 'worst race weekend of my racing career'.
The JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider missed out on the BSB crown by 29 points in the final standing to Byrne, eventually losing his shot at the crown in the penultimate race, after enduring a frustrating last round at Brands Hatch.
The former World Superbike star was hit by a broken right handlebar during qualifying which dumped him out in Q2 to start race one from 17th.
Despite battling up the order and being as high as second in the second restart he crashed out on the opening lap to allow Byrne to stretch his advantage.
Haslam put on a courageous fightback in race two but ultimately fell short in fifth with Byrne easing home in sixth to take the title. With the JG Speedfit Kawasaki rider looking to end 2016 on a high he narrowly missed out on the podium to cap a disappointing final round.
“This year has really been one highs and lows,” Haslam said. “We've had to grind out some results at times in some less than ideal situations as we knew we were winning but with ongoing issues.
"We had a lull at Thruxton and Snetterton so we have had some tough times. But I can honestly say the last round at Brands Hatch has been the hardest of my racing career with the issues we've had.
“Shakey and I have competed against one another over the past 15 years and we knew he would be a main rival. Midway through the year we knew we had to step up as he had the Ducati working really well and we knew we might not beat him at some tracks.
“Byrne has been Mr. Consistent and deserves the title as he put the results together staying on when he's needed to. For me that will drive me on for next year.
“Generally, though I'm super happy as we've worked well as a team and got some fantastic results and as a team won 50% of races this year. I've got the same amount of wins and podiums over the season as Shakey but did all my crashing in the Showdown to it is something I need to learn for next year.”