Max Biaggi missed an opportunity to capitalise on the first sign of weakness from World Superbike title leader Leon Haslam, in race one at Assen on Sunday.

The Englishman, who had finished first or second in five of the previous six races and fourth in the other, suffered a front puncture on his Alstare Suzuki - dropping him from fourth on the grid to eleventh.

However Biaggi, who came into round four 18 points behind Haslam, could only manage a sixth place finish due to 'difficulties' with the behaviour of his Aprilia.

The Italian had been outpaced by rookie team-mate Leon Camier all weekend and, although gifted fourth place in race two after Camier's late crash, second for Haslam meant Biaggi leaves Assen 20 points from the top.

Double Portimao winner Biaggi now intends to work on the issues he experienced in Holland during a forthcoming test to ensure his home Monza round on May 9 is more successful.

"I'm going home quite satisfied, especially if I think about how the weekend began, the difficulties we had in the practice sessions and then in the Superpole and - above all - about the fact that I started in eleventh place on a track where it is extremely difficult to overtake," said Max.

"In race one I struggled a bit to maintain the pace. In race two, on the other hand, I got over the problems I had been having up to that point and it went better. But then certain difficulties came up and I want to concentrate precisely on these problems in the next tests in Misano with my RSV4. The season is long and these are important points".

Biaggi is now 18 points clear of Ten Kate Honda's double Assen winner Jonathan Rea.

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