Portimao: Bayliss ends era in style.

With tyres beginning to fade, albeit more evenly than they did in the first race, the latter stages were all about Haslam as he found an extra burst of speed on the HM Plant Honda.

Catching Corser, who was now all but confirmed in the runners-up spot, Haslam flapped his way through to fourth on lap 15, while the equally hard-charging Nieto followed through soon afterwards.

Indeed, with Nieto beginning to put the pressure on, Haslam knew he needed to catch and overtake Neukirchner quickly in order to resist the Spaniard. It was a feat he duly achieved with just over one lap remaining, jumping onto the podium in the process.

Another couple of laps may have seen him catch Fabrizio too, but the chequered flag had fallen and at the front the champagne corks were already popping for Bayliss, who rounded the corner for the final time to complete an outstanding weekend at the end of an outstanding career.

Fabrizio made it a perfect race for the championship winning Ducati Xerox team as he heads into 2009 hoping to go some way to filling his predecessor's shoes.

Haslam joined Tom Sykes and Cal Crutchlow in scoring a wild-card podium, his third place very much giving rivals a glimpse into 2009 and the force the strong British contingent is expected to be next year.

Suzuki ended what looked like being a tough weekend remarkably well in fourth and fifth, Neukirchner leading Nieto, while Corser secured second place in the standings with a quiet run to sixth place.

A late spurt helped Checa recover to seventh, while the as-yet-unemployed Lavilla gave prospective bosses something to think about over the winter with a second strong top ten finish of the day. Crutchlow faded back to ninth, while Laconi delivered another solid result at the end of a difficult season for Kawasaki in tenth.

Just behind, Ryuichi Kiyonari, Jakub Smrz and Biaggi finished their season in the points with 11th, 12th and 13th, while the recovering Haga and Rea saved some face by finishing 14th and 15th respectively.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Bayliss, Portuguese WSBK 2008
Ducati pack up for long haul, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati pack up, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati Panigale engine, Misano WSBK 2017
Ducati Panigale bikes, Misano WSBK 2017
Xavi Fores, Barni Ducati [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Marco Melandri, Racing Ducati [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Marco Melandri, Racing Ducati [Credit: Ian Hopgood]
Haslam, WSS Race, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam , WSS Race, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam, WSBK Race2, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam , WSBK Race2, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam, WSBK Race2, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam, WSBK Race2, Donington WSBK 2017
Haslam, WSBK Race2, Donington WSBK 2017

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