Eugene Laverty says he has plenty of positives to take away from his much anticipated World Superbike Championship debut as he successfully completed a seamless transition from Supersport racing.
The Irishman showed the fighting spirit that took him to twelve WSS race wins as he became the first rider to lead a WSBK lap in 2011 and while he was swallowed up by the chasing pack as he suffered with arm pump, a late push would see him snatch a satisfying fourth from Yamaha team-mate Marco Melandri at the finish line.
He didn't fare so well in race two, Laverty hitting a false neutral that sent him off the circuit at MG and down to the back of the field. Another false neutral whilst recovering set him back further, though he was able to snatch a solitary point by the chequered flag.
Despite missing out on another 'definite fourth', Laverty was delighted with his first WSBK experience, suggesting the races have thrown up some different results than testing would have led to believe.
“In the first race I had problems with arm pump and had just to sit there, I had the possibility to go third but didn't want to risk my arms. I got it fixed at Clinica, it was just really stiff after five days riding on a Superbike this week!
“Marco upped the pace in second race; it would have been tough to beat, but there was a definite fourth there for me. Unfortunately two false neutrals killed the race leaving me with one point.
“On the plus side I'm very positive for Donington, we've clearly got a very competitive package and under race conditions we can see that our competitors aren't as fast as the practice sessions suggested.”