Leon Haslam has shrugged off his last lap defeat at the hands of Shane Byrne by consoling himself with the fact that he secured second place in the British Superbike standings.
Stymied by a shoulder injury, sustained when he fell during qualifying yesterday, Haslam has adrenalin – and pain killers – to thank when he got a strong start in the final race of the year and led up to Druids.
Holding that position for almost the race's entirety, Haslam would be caught by a charging Shane Byrne in the latter stages.
However, while he resisted the new champion's first attempts at wrestling the lead off him with three laps remaining, a distraction caused by backmarkers allowed him a second chance to pounce and swipe the position.
Occurring, agonisingly, two corners from home, Haslam admits he was disappointed to miss out on a sixth win in nine races, but was satisfied to have at least cemented second in the overall standings.
“In the first race I couldn't be as aggressive as I wanted to thanks to the injury, but between the two races the physiotherapist worked on the collar-bone and after the start the adrenalin kicked in.
"When Shakey caught up in race two, I tried to be as smooth as possible. I held Shane off into Paddock Hill Bend, but as we went into Clearways for the last time, I could see the backmarker and I backed off a little, but Shakey didn't.
"I then went a bit wide onto the grass and that was the end of it. Of course I'm disappointed with not winning a race today, but we secured second in the championship.
Glancing ahead to 2009, when Haslam switches to the World Superbike Championship with Stiggy Honda, the multiple BSB race winner was admits he is 'sad' to be leaving the domestic series.
“Once more the fans were fantastic for me today and I hope to be out there battling for wins in the World Superbike Championship next season. It's sad to say goodbye to the fans after being runner-up in the series twice and third once, but the World scene is where my heart is. Thanks also to the HM Plant Honda team and all my sponsors for their support and hard-work in 2008."