Ruben Xaus admitted to feeling jealous when he realised that BMW team-mate Troy Corser was running a superb fourth in the early stages of race two at Qatar on Saturday, but the Spaniard used his envy as positive motivation to eventually finish less than a tenth of a second behind the Australian.
Unfortunately, Corser had been unable to maintain his impressive early form and crossed the line ninth, where he had been in race one, but tenth place marked Ruben's best result on the new S1000RR - and the first time that both BMW riders had finished inside the top ten.
“I'm really happy with the races today and although there's lots of work to do, I think Troy and I did a great job,” said Xaus, who was 13th in race one. “I'm very happy with race two, because I ended nearly nine seconds closer to the front then in race one.
“On my sighting lap for race two, I thought it might be better to go longer on the rear sprocket. I knew that it would be a problem on the start, but it was a risk I wanted to take. And it wasn't a good start, but I soon got into a good rhythm.
“My biggest surprise was seeing that Troy was fourth! I was jealous because I wanted to be there!” he smiled. “I just kept pushing hard and I managed to catch Troy towards the end of the race. I thought about trying to pass him, but thought 'Ruben don't do anything stupid', so I stayed behind.
“Then Haslam overtook me two laps from the end and pushed me out of the top ten, but I said 'No, no, no!' and made sure I got past him before the finish so that Troy and I could both be in the top ten,” Xaus concluded.
After watching both riders start from back on the fourth row, BMW Motorrad Motorsport director Berti Hauser was a happy man.
“The most important thing this weekend is that we have learnt a lot, but I must also say that the results today make me more than happy,” he said. “Troy did an amazing job in both races and the great work between the two riders helped us get both in the top ten in race two.
“Considering that our team is still learning, I think this is a great achievement this early in the championship and I'd like to thank them and riders for all the hard work here and at Phillip Island. Friday was 'Black Friday' for us, but today our results mean we can all leave Qatar happy,” he declared.