We at Crash.net
recently invited you to cast your vote for your favourite riders in this year's Bennetts British Superbikes season by rating their efforts out of ten.
Now, having crunched the numbers and tapped the calculators we will begin to start counting down the riders you believe were most deserving of your plaudits in 2008.
Over the next ten days, we will be revealing the top ten in reverse order, with the winner being revealed on Friday 14 November. Almost 12,000 votes were cast on the BSB poll, with each riders average score out of ten then being calculated to decide the winner.
BSB Rider of the Year – Fourth place:
HM Plant Honda
Honda CRB1000RR Fireblade
While much of the pre-season attention was on his team-mate, to some extent Cal Crutchlow embarrassed his more experienced HM Plant counterpart Leon Haslam in 2008 – a fact recognised by the fact you voted Crutchlow ahead of Haslam in your poll.
The only rider to breach Shane Byrne's clean sheet in the first eight races of the season, wins at Thruxton and Brands Hatch actually kept Crutchlow within fighting range of the Ducati rider heading into the busy mid-season.
However, Crutchlow's hopes were effectively ended by errors of his own doing, namely his falls at Knockhill and Cadwell Park, and the improved competitiveness of rivals like Haslam, Tom Sykes and Leon Camier that swallowed him up and made the fight for first as close as the fight for fifth.
Crutchlow didn't win again, although his frequent visits to the podium ensured that he was in the right place at the right time when Sykes retired in the final race of the season, bumping him back up to third position overall.
Still, with his star turns on the world stage at Donington Park and Portimao in mind, it is easy to forget how far Crutchlow has come in 2008. It makes you wonder if he should have committed himself to the World Supersport Championship in 2009 when he is arguably WSBK material…
4th – Cal Crutchlow
5th – Leon Haslam
6th – Leon Camier
7th – Michael Rutter
8th – John Laverty
9th – Michael Laverty
10th – Simon Andrews
Tomorrow: We reach number three in the BSB Rider of the Year poll.