Leon Haslam says he noticed a 'clear improvement' from BMW at Donington Park this weekend, despite failing to match the podium he achieved at the Phillip Island season opener.
The local rider was hoping he could challenge for BMW's first World Superbike win after qualifying in second position alongside Carlos Checa, but while he led the way during the early stages of both races, he couldn't sustain his pace.
A stern defence of second position in race one was rewarded with a solid fourth, Haslam unlucky to be caught and passed by a charging Checa with just two corners remaining.
Revisions to the bike in race two saw Haslam dice with Marco Melandri and Leon Camier for second, but an error on lap seven dropped him down the order. A determined fight back would see him up to fourth at the chequered flag once more.
Though it wasn't an improvement in results after finishing third in Australia, Haslam was satisfied that development is heading in the right direction.
“It has again been a hard fought weekend for us, but we have definitely made clear improvements from Australia. In race one we had some issues, which were similar to those I experienced in Phillip Island, so we made some changes for the second race and it was a real improvement, especially during the second half.
“I made a mistake in the early laps of race two, which dropped me back a number of places, but I was happy I was able to fight back and finish strong. We will now work hard to be ready for Assen.”
Having finished each of the opening four races inside the top five, Haslam is now classified third in the standings.