Max Biaggi was unable to make the most of his pole positions during the latest round of the World Superbike Championship at the Nurburgring after an uncharacteristically quiet race day performance.
Having taken an 'unexpected' pole position in qualifying, Biaggi struggled to make it count into the tight opening bend, the Italian left on the outside as his rivals swept beneath and ahead.
Dropping to eighth early on in the first race, Biaggi fought back to fourth, but could not lift the Aprilia into podium contention before the chequered flag.
He didn't fare any better in race two, a stronger start being negated by an error that dropped him to an eventual fifth place.
However, while he did lose two points to Leon Haslam in the fight for the title, Biaggi still retains a huge 58 point margin with only 100 left to play for at Imola and Magny-Cours.
"A shame,” he lamented. “We battled all weekend with grip and chattering problems. I know that I can be decisively faster. In fact, in Superpole with the soft tyre we were making excellent times. But the important thing is to know how to deal with the difficulties.
“We took home some important points from a championship point of view and now there are just two more rounds and we're out front. The finish line is close, but we cannot make the mistake of underestimating our rivals who, even today, showed their determination to exploit every false move we make."