Leon Haslam believes he rode to the 'best possible result' at one of the most challenging tracks for both him and his Aprilia RSV4 RF on Saturday at Imola.

The Englishman qualified fifth after falling five minutes into the final qualifying session after losing the front end of his machine as he sought to change direction in the Variante Alta chicane.

Thankfully the spill did no significant damage to rider nor machine and the 31-year old was able to return to pit lane before bettering his earlier time.

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In the end his final effort of 1m 46.854s was just under half a second off Davide Giugliano's pole position lap, an effort that pleased Haslam considering his handlebar was slightly bent.

"My general feeling is really good, although I'm still struggling in the chicanes. That's why I crashed, fortunately without doing any damage," he said.

"We have been working well, in spite of the fact that it has been quite a demanding weekend for us. Thanks to the team I was able to put in a good time anyway on the qualifier tyre, even if the semi-handlebar was a bit bent and kept me from being at 100%.

"On a particularly difficult track for us we were still able to achieve the best possible result and we'll be trying hard tomorrow as well."