Jerez: Van der Mark’s Jerez podium ‘good for motivation’

Michael van der Mark claims his first podium finish since April will provide the Pata Honda team with added motivation to finish 2015 strongly
Michael van der Mark has stated his race one podium in Jerez will provide both himself and his Pata Honda squad with added motivation to finish his debut World Superbike season strongly.

Inside the top six at just two of the previous twelve races, van der Mark took a composed third place in the first Spanish encounter on Sunday a day after righting several of his recent qualifying wrongs.

The Dutchman was in the thick of the podium fight again in race two and claims he was holding back for a late assault before a front end fall at the Angel Nieto curve put paid to chances of another strong finish.

Still, the Dutchman saw the positives in a weekend in which he made significant improvements with the CBR1000R's chassis and electronics.

“We haven't changed a lot which is good for us. The bike is working well and we needed to find some grip. When the tyre dropped my pace was still fast like the top guys. Of course to start P4 was a big help.

“I think this track suits the bike well this year. Everywhere we made a step – the chassis, electronics and myself. It's difficult to say what really changed. We still miss a lot in power but the bike is so good in the corners I can close the gap every time.

“All weekend I've had some difficulties with the clutch, so the start in race one was not perfect. I managed to stay with the guys even though I was missing some grip at the beginning. As the pace dropped a little I was able to close the gap but I had to wait a little more before I could pass Leon [Haslam] and Jonathan [Rea]. I tried to close the gap to Chaz [Davies] but the grip was not there.

“Race two was a little bit similar at the beginning and I closed the gap to the front as the pace began to drop. I had a good feeling when I got to the back of Torres and Haslam so I was holding back a little bit because I saw they were pushing really hard. Then I just lost the front in a slow corner and crashed.

“I was able to get back on and do some good lap times before the end of the race and I think overall I must be happy with the performance this weekend. We finally had a weekend without problems and that's really good for my motivation, and of course the podium is great motivation for the whole team.”

Tagged as: Honda , Haslam , Jerez , Davies , PATA Honda

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September 20, 2015 7:32 PM

Great weekend for Van der Mark, in which he shows he has the talent to do great things in WSBK. So pleased to see him get a 3rd podium. It was a shame he crashed out of the 2nd race, but at least he showed himself again, while he was fighting for another podium. Hopefully in the last 2 rounds he'll get his qualifying right again en start from a good grid position like today.

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