Leon Haslam believes things 'can only go better' for the sixth round of the 2011 World Superbike Championship at Misano after a disappointing weekend in the USA.
Haslam struggled for pace throughout the Miller Motorsports Park event, and though Troy Corser showed flashes of speed by leading the first race for several laps, both factory BMW riders were ultimately out-performed by the manufacturer's satellite operation BMW Italia.
Nonetheless, Haslam has high hopes for Misano, particularly after Corser's pole position in 2010, while a recent test there has also given him reason to be confident.
“I am looking forward to Misano. We tested there a few weeks ago, and that test went off very well. We found a good set-up for this upcoming weekend, and put in some pretty competitive lap times. I think we are well prepared for Misano. It can only go better than the last race weekend in the USA. We definitely need to take some more steps forward. Fingers crossed we will do so in Misano, but after our test I am confident.
“Misano is a fast and flowing circuit. Troy had a successful race there last year, so I'm sure we can have a good result again. I am looking forward to the circuit. The temperature is normally warm, and that always plays a part. As long as we can find the right set-up I am feeling pretty confident.”
Corser, meanwhile, is also hoping to return to the kind of pace that had him take a Superpole last season, particularly after scoring just three points in the USA.
“I like Misano, and have always had good results here. We tested here after the Monza race, which was very encouraging. We found a good set-up, so I am looking forward to the race weekend. I think Leon and I should have a pretty strong race. In the USA it was a bit of a let-down having those tyre issues in the first race after starting so strong. In the second race I made a mistake and went down, which was a shame as we could have had a good race.
“The track in Misano is pretty fast, with the back straight being very important. The grip is quite good, but I think the temperature will be high at this time of year, so it could physically be a tough race. You don't get much rest except on the back straight, where you have about four seconds before turning in again. The rest of the track consists of a combination of corners, so you need to be very fit. But I am fit enough and the bike works well here, so I think we should get a good result.”