Noriyuki Haga has questioned the jump-start penalty that spoiled his hopes of leaving the Yamaha World Superbike team on the ultimate high of a victory.
Also losing out on the chance to finish second in the overall standings, thus ending his record of never being beaten by his team-mate, Haga endured a torrid day after retiring in the first race and then falling out of contention in the second with his penalty.
A sour end to a season that otherwise saw him win on seven occasions, Haga was frustrated to be caught out in the second race, claiming he didn't do enough to warrant a drive-thru. He would eventually finish 14th.
"In race two they said I jump started and for sure I moved a bit, but before the lights changed I stopped again. Overall, in the first race we had a problem and I had to pull out. But I had the chance to do a bit of work on the suspension setting for race two, and we went one step harder on the rear tyre too.
“It worked better but we still had some chatter. We lost a lot of practice time, unfortunately, because of the rain. Our pace in race two was much better.”
Heading to pastures new in 2009 after signing for Ducati Xerox, Haga was nonetheless full of praise for the Yamaha team that has made up a significant part of his long career.
“I have to say thank you very much to all the Yamaha staff for the past four years, it has been very enjoyable and we have had many great days. I wanted to get a victory for them but that was the most I could do today."