A struggle to get comfortable on the bike was Noriyuki Haga's reason for a disappointing weekend in the latest round of the World Superbike Championship at Miller Motorsports Park.

The championship leader, who was also reeling from a massive accident during qualifying, could only manage an eighth and ninth place finish in the two races, with double winner Ben Spies taking a sizeable 35 point chunk out of the title advantage.

Haga made good starts in both races to be challenging for a podium position, but would be swamped in what proved to be a closely fought tussle for the top places.

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Struggling to maintain a good pace throughout the races, Haga faded on both occasions to come away with his lowest points haul of the season thus far.

"I did not have a very good feeling with my bike in race one. It was very hot out there and I can't say I was having an easy time. We changed the setting a little for the second race but I still wasn't able to fight for the podium despite the fact that it was only a few seconds out of grasp.

"Unfortunately many riders were just stronger then me today. I am not 100 per cent of course after my crash yesterday and I didn't expect to win here today but I am happy to have taken points all the same, important points for the championship.

"I'll get back in shape before Misano where I want to be back fighting for the win."