Cal Crutchlow's full World Superbike Championship debut got off to a somewhat inauspicious start after an error in each race left him with a sole ninth place finish on his score card at Phillip Island.

The reigning World Supersport Champion looked to have turned his fortunes around during Superpole with a run to third on the grid, but after falling to sixth early on in race one, a mistake at Honda on lap six would see him hit the deck and retire.

He fared only marginally better in race two when another error at the same corner dropped him down the order initially. Although he worked his way back up to eighth, grip problems would eventually consign him to ninth at the chequered flag.

Concluding an indifferent first weekend with the Yamaha Sterilgarda team, Crutchlow admits the team will need to have a rethink before the next round in a month's time.

"Race one was unfortunate, I felt we had good pace and were running up in the top five quite comfortably, I just made a little mistake. I was a bit better than Rea into the hairpin so had to run wide to avoid him and lost the front on the dirt.

"The second race was hard, I felt like I had no grip from the start and still some chattering. If we had better grip we could have pulled more out of it. We need to go back to the drawing board and work some stuff out."


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