Deposed World Superbike Champion Carlos Checa has pronounced himself 'happy' with fourth position in the overall standings, despite concluding his 2012 season with a mere seventh place finish.
Keen to give the outgoing Ducati 1098R/1198 a fitting send-off before it is replaced by the 1199 Panigale for 2013, Checa was well placed in third position during the first encounter, but just as he was beginning to close the gap on Tom Sykes ahead, he crashed out at turn three.
Looking for better fortune in the drier second race, Checa struggled to keep pace with the leaders as he slipped back to an eventual seventh place finish.
Nonetheless, the result it was still enough for him to maintain fourth in the overall standings, the Spaniard pleased with his performance despite struggling to replicate the form that saw him win 15 races during a crushing 2011 title-winning campaign.
“It was a strange weekend. A pity for the crash in race 1 but conditions were difficult and the track was very slippery, these things happen.
“Then in the second I didn't have the same feelings that I'd had yesterday, the bike seemed different and was moving a lot more. This made it hard and I couldn't lap with the kind of times that I expected.
“Anyway the season is over, it was long and we had highs and lows along the way. I'm happy to close in fourth overall because considering the problems we've had I don't think the final result is bad.”
A winner of four races in 2012, Checa is expected to return with Althea Racing next season aboard the new Ducati 1199 Panigale.