Sylvain Guintoli was left to wonder what could have been after his hopes of a maiden World Superbike podium were left ruined by a bungled move that Troy Corser has since apologised for.
Guintoli was starting from the front row of the grid for the first time, the Frenchman heading into race day keen to record his maiden World Superbike podium.
However, a poor start dropped him into the mid-pack where he was attacked by Corser at the Dunlop hairpin on the opening lap. It was an unsuccessful attempt, however, Corser making contact with Guintoli and sending them both onto the gravel trap.
Although Guintoli produced an outstanding fight back to cross the line eighth, having displayed a similar pace to that of the leaders, he was frustrated to have been denied a proper opportunity to put his pace to use.
“If Troy had not have forced me out on lap one of the first race, the ending might've been a different story,” he said. “Once I got back on the track, I felt I was lapping as fast as anybody really and I suppose 8th was a pretty good result, considering. I was angry with Troy because I honestly felt I could get on the podium.”
Corser, who blamed the failed pass on a painful elbow sustained in his collision with Leon Haslam during the aborted first start, duly apologised to Guintoli.
“On the first lap, I got in the turn too hot because I couldn't feel how hard I was braking! I ran wide and unfortunately took Sylvain with me (sorry Sylvain!).”
A poor start hampered Guintoli in race two as well, the former MotoGP rider recovering to sixth to at least maintain his perfect scoring record this season and move up to eighth in the overall standings.