After seven years of domination by Ten Kate Honda, Cal Crutchlow has finally broken the team's stranglehold on the World Supersport Championship by clinching the title at the final round of the season.

With Crutchlow mirroring the achievement of Yamaha counterpart Ben Spies by winning in his maiden season, while it was already a foregone conclusion that Ten Kate would hand over its crown heading to Portugal, the Briton still had to beat the Honda of Eugene Laverty.

As it happens, Laverty did his utmost to snatch the title from Crutchlow by winning the final race from pole position, but fourth was all the soon-to-be World Superbike rider needed to take the series.

It was an epic season too, Crutchlow and Laverty overcoming their lack of experience around certain circuits to put on a fabulous show. Indeed, races at Assen, Misano and Miller Motorsports Park will be considered 'classics' for years to come.

They were pushed hard though, with record-breaking former champion Kenan Sofuoglu's disappointing first half to the year ultimately preventing him from getting on terms when it mattered, the Turk nonetheless securing third with three wins to his name.

The surprise package of the season, however, was arguably Joan Lascorz, who revived the reputation of Kawasaki at Supersport level with an outstanding performance that included one win and five further podiums. Another to suffer at the start of the season, the Spaniard, who returns with the team next season, is considered a title threat for 2010.

In all, only five riders won races in 2009, with Fabien Foret's triumph at Brno coming after he prevailed in an exciting last lap dual. It also meant he was able to keep outgoing champion Andrew Pitt and former MotoGP rider Anthony West at bay for a solid fifth in the standings.

After a trying maiden season developing the Triumph Daytona 675, Garry McCoy showed great form on the revised bike, now run by BE1 Racing, in 2009, scoring two podiums to finish eighth in the overall standings, a massive leap from 26th in 2008.

It made him the biggest mover between 2008 and 2009, although other big improvements came from Katsuaki Fujiwara on the second Kawasaki (up from 22nd to 10th) and Miguel Praia (up from 25th to 15th). Special mention also goes to Danilo Dell'Omo, who, having failed to score once in 2008, got on the score sheet six times this time around.

Overall, 37 riders scored points in 14 races, down from 41 in 2008, with five riders winning races, five starting from pole position (Crutchlow, Laverty, Sofuoglu, Lascorz and Michele Pirro), and ten taking a podium finish.

With riders locking out positions six down to nine, Australia was the most successful nation with a total of 426 points, well ahead of Great Britain & Northern Ireland on 296 and Italy on 241.

Full 2009 World Supersport Championship rider standings (Previous 2008 championship position in brackets)

1. (-) Cal Crutchlow Yamaha WSS 243 2. (21*) Eugene Laverty Parkalgar Honda 236 3. (19*) Kenan Sofuoglu Ten Kate Honda 189 4. (5) Joan Lascorz Provec Motocard Kawasaki 163 5. (6) Fabien Foret Yamaha WSS 123 6. (1) Andrew Pitt Ten Kate Honda 119 7. (-) Anthony West Stiggy Honda 117 8. (26) Garry McCoy BE1 Triumph 98 9. (14) Mark Aitchison Althea Honda 93 10. (22) Katsuaki Fujiwara Provec Motocard Kawasaki 73 11. (12) Massimo Roccoli Intermoto Czech Honda 70 12. (-) Michele Pirro Lorenzini by Leoni Yamaha 70 13. (8) Barry Veneman Hoegee Suzuki/George White Honda 58 14. (13**) Matthieu Lagrive Althea Honda 45 15. (25) Miguel Praia Parkalgar Honda 40 16. (10) Gianluca Nannelli BE1 Triumph 31 17. (9) Robbin Harms Veidec Honda 30 18. (11) Gianluca Vizziello Stiggy Honda 29 19. (-) Danilo Dell'Omo Kuja Honda 27 20. (-) Chaz Davies BE1 Triumph 22 21. (-) Michael Laverty Veidec Honda/Echo CRS Honda 10 22. (-) Sheridan Morais YZF Yamaha 10 23. (36) Patrick Vostarek Intermoto Czech Honda 9 24. (-) Doni Tata Pradita YZF Yamaha 8 25. (-) Olivier Four Intermoto Czech Honda 8 26. (-) Kev Coghlan Holiday Gym Yamaha 6 27. (-) Franco Battiani TNT Yamaha 5 28. (-) Flavio Gentile Althea Honda 5 29. (-) James Westmoreland JW Triumph 5 30. (34) Cristiano Migliorati Puccetti Kawasaki 4 31. (-) Martin Cardenas Veidec Honda 4 32. (-) Arie Vos Viedec Honda 3 33. (23) Hudson Kennaugh Linxcel-Seton Honda 2 34. (-) Kevin Wahr G-LAB Racing Triumph 2 35. (-) Alex Polita Hoegee Suzuki 1 36. (-) Yannick Guerra Holiday Gym Yamaha 1 37. (-) Jesco Gunther Veidec Honda 1

(*) Only completed part-season in 2008
(**) Only completed part-season in 2009

Full 2009 World Supersport Championship manufacturer standings (Previous 2008 championship position in brackets)

1. (1) Honda 297 points 2. (2) Yamaha 284 3. (5) Kawasaki 186 4. (4) Triumph 114 5. (3) Suzuki 30


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