Former WSBK race winner Chris Walker claimed two 15th place finishes on his return to premier-class action at Brands Hatch on Sunday.

The new Vent Axia VK Honda signing, who raced for Kawasaki in World Supersport during the previous 2008 rounds, missed out on Superpole as he fought to get to terms with the 1000cc Fireblade and lined-up just 23rd on the grid for his home event.

The Stalker then fought his way forward in both races, finishing one place behind team-mate Gregorio Lavilla in race one and two places from the former BSB champion in race two, as he achieved his goal of a double point-scoring finish.

"I'm pleased," Walker told Radio. "It was my first time out on the bike and I only had one bike this weekend so I was conscious that I didn't need to be tipping off and losing valuable track time. I've learnt lots and I know what I need to work on for Donington Park in three weeks time.

"To get points - that's what the team were hoping for and that's what I managed. One point or ten points, at least I got in the points. That's the main thing. I really enjoyed the races. The bike is far ahead of Chris Walker at the moment, so I can grow and learn to ride it and challenge for the top ten, which is where we need to be.

"I've been in the midfield all year on the Supersport bike; I've not qualified well but in the races I've always been around tenth, eleventh or twelfth. So to be back in Superbike - having had the best part of the winter off and two-thirds of the season - and be in the same position straight away, I couldn't ask for any more really.

"I really enjoyed it and the races went quick. The first time I looked at my pit board was with about seven laps to go in both races. You know you're having fun when it's like that."

Walker, who took his first and so far only WSBK victory with an incredible wet weather ride at Assen 2006, had been second fastest in the wet morning warm-up at Brands Hatch, but denied he been hoping for rain in the races.

"I went well in morning warm-up, but I needed two dry races to learn more," said the Englishman. "I've got a bit of an idea of where I need to improve now, having got two dry races under my belt, but we'll get a wet one sooner or later and maybe I can pull something special out of the bag."

Walker will be back in action in front of his home fans at the forthcoming Donington Park round on September 7.

"I was disappointed not to be in Superpole here, so I'll be desperate to be in Superpole [at Donington Park] and then having two top tens finishes will be really nice," said Walker, who spent the 2007 season riding for Rizla Suzuki in BSB. "That's where I really want to be and that's where the bike is capable of being without a doubt. I've got a bit of work to do, but I'm up for it."

Away from the track, Walker plans to rebuild his upper body strength to handle the extra power of a Superbike, having lost weight to try and get the most out of his previous Supersport machine.

"Chris had a good weekend and did what we expected him to do," declared team manager Paul Bird. "We threw him in the deep end and he did a professional job. I'm pleased with his performance and we're really happy to have him in the team."

Regular Vent Axia rider Lavilla finished 14th and 13th at Brands Hatch.


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