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WSBK Rider of the Year vote: 7th

You vote Leon Hasam seventh in Crash.net's WSBK Rider of the Year poll.
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2011:
7. Leon Haslam

Name: Leon Haslam
Nationality: British
Team: BMW Motorrad
Bike: BMW S1000RR
Wins: 0
Podiums: 3
Championship points: 224
Championship position: 5th

Though his heart may have told him to stay with Suzuki for 2011 following his excellent run to second position in the 2010 World Superbike Championship standings, the manufacturer's reluctance to develop that project ensured Leon Haslam listened to his head when he confirmed his move to BMW.

In theory, Haslam's arrival came at a perfect time, the Briton joining a team on the ascendancy following a much improved sophomore campaign that saw it on the podium and taking a pole position. As such, with Haslam on board, wins were expected in 2011 but BMW failed to take the step forward many had anticipated.

Things certainly looked good initially, Haslam taking a podium in his first race with the team at Phillip Island, but it was a feat he'd repeat on just two further occasions over the year, at Monza and Magny-Cours.

It certainly wasn't through lack of trying, Haslam visibly wringing every ounce of performance out of the tricky S1000RR. This was particularly evident during a frustrating mid-season lull, Haslam struggling for consistent pace, but still able to post some respectable results from less than ideal positions.

The efforts of Ayrton Badovini on the satellite BMW Italia machine brought Haslam's efforts into sharper focus, but he remained a reliable hand, failing to score on just three occasions.

So while the results didn't quite live up to expectations, fifth in the final standings remains a huge improvement on previous BMW efforts, even if Haslam was probably the more defining factor than a bike that must improve more in 2012.

Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2010: 1st
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2009: 5th
Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2008: N/A

Top 10 WSBK Rider of the Year 2011:

8. Ayrton Badovini
9. Max Biaggi
10. Noriyuki Haga

Do you agree the poll results? If not, why not? Leave your comments below...


Tagged as: BMW , Leon Haslam

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Tetley

December 09, 2011 12:35 PM

Leon had to do some serious pushing to get the bike where it is. He must have great faith in BMW to be starting 2012 on the same old nail. If he's not a podium regular next year he surely must jump ship to another manfr. He would go well on an Aprilia.



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