Chaz Davies lost 'a point and a position' when he was misled by a message displayed on the main straight near the end of race one at the Qatar World Superbike season finale.

The 'final lap' message was shown early, with Davies one of the riders who slowed down too soon as a result. The chequered flag, which officially ends the race, was shown correctly.

The Factory Ducati rider went on to finish in eighth place and still holds a healthy 23-point advantage over Michael van der Mark in their duel for second in the world championship heading into tomorrow's finale.

"We started a bit behind after a tough qualifying and then we began to make our way back," Davies said.

"I eventually caught up with Marco and Xavi, closing up on them in the middle part of the race, but then I started to feel the front tucking with five laps to go and it got progressively worse.

"Our priority is to finish second in the championship so I just tried to hold position.

"Once Baz passed me, I saw 'final lap' on the display on the finish line, even though it was shown too early by accident, so I closed the throttle once I was over the line in the following lap.

"I lost a point and a position on the grid for tomorrow, which is a bit disappointing, but we also need to improve to finish stronger in our last race of the year."

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Team-mate Marco Melandri was the top Ducati rider, in fifth.

"Going into this round, I wasn't expecting the kind of race we had today, and unfortunately it was tough for all Ducati riders," said the Italian, who battled Barni's Xavi Fores for most of the race.

"We couldn't really do what we wanted with the bike, we were struggling to stop and turn it, and we also had some issues with traction. Due to that, I had to ride more aggressively and the tyres dropped down a lot.

"Tomorrow we'll start from first row, which is better, but we still need to improve the setup with the rear to put up a challenge. Warm-up will be important to this end. We'd like to finish strong."

Saturday's race, which Melandri will start from second and Davies fifth, will mark the final WorldSBK appearance for a factory V-Twin Ducati before next year's V4 debut.