Crash.Net WSBK News
Haslam battles hard at Brno, regains fifth
11 July 2011
Leon Haslam has risen back into the top five of the World Superbike Championship standings, despite describing his seventh and eighth place results at Brno as 'not where he wants to finish'.
Riding as BMW Motorrad's sole representative in the Czech Republic this weekend, Haslam faced a considerable challenge from 13th on the grid, but good starts in both races saw him embroiled in the mid-pack fight.
Grip issues early on in both races would see him slip outside the top ten, but he would build his pace during the latter stages to claim eighth in race one before snatching seventh on the final corner of race two.
Though they are results that he considers below par, particularly next to satellite BMW rider Ayrton Badovini who finished well up the road on both occasions in sixth position, Haslam has nonetheless risen to fifth in the overall standings.
“The first race I had a good start. With new, grippy tyres I was struggling a little bit with my pace, so some other riders were able to pass me. But when the grip went away I did not go any slower - but they did, so I caught up again. That was a good battle and I passed three guys during the last few laps, which was exciting. In race two I was held up a little bit so Ayrton, who was in sixth, could get away. But then I had a really good battle with Lascorz in the last two laps.
“They were two pretty hard races for eighth and seventh. Of course this is not where we want to finish, but we kind of understand what the issue is and know what direction to take now. I am pretty happy with the progress we made and I hope we can make up the difference at my next home race at Silverstone.”
Haslam is three points ahead of Leon Camier and Michel Fabrizio, but is now 31 points behind Eugene Laverty.