Eugene Laverty has recovered ground in the World Superbike Championship standings after making his long awaited return to the podium at Sepang.

Down to tenth in the standings after a run of poor form coming into the Malaysian event, Laverty had qualified a modest seventh but was able to pick his way up the order early on in the first race when three rivals - including team-mate Alex Lowes - were eliminated in a turn one crash.

Rising to fifth place, Laverty steadily caught and passed Chaz Davies and Toni Elias ahead of him to record his first podium finish since winning at the Phillip Island opener.

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Going on to finish seventh in the second race, a disappointing result he attributed to the shorter race distance, Laverty was pleased to be on the WSBK rostrum again, particularly after hurting his foot in an accident during his MotoGP test earlier in the week.

"It was fantastic to get back on the podium in race one - a nice reward for all the guys because they deserved it in Donington but I threw it away in race one, so we are back where we belong I think.

"Race two, with the shorter distance, didn't suit my Suzuki because we were better on old tyres but it's been a positive weekend in all and it's nice to finally be back in the top three for the first time since Phillip Island."

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Some of you doubters might like to log on to Eugene's web site. He has posted a photo of 2 of the ugliest feet you have (and probably will) ever see.

Many riders put this pain / injury to the back of their mind with the assistance of a needle or two (not all riders - but some) and do all they can to pursue the trophy that awaits them.

There are also a few bloggers on this site who don't like Eugene - that's fine, but don't ever knock his determination to achieve his goal he set out to attain many years ago. This also goes for every other racer who goes out on the track with pains, breaks, etc., and don't forget these guys also have issues floating around in the back of their mind - e.g., do I have a ride next year, etc., etc.