Frustration in the 13th round for racer Haslam

Leon Haslam in action (number 91)''Photo by Graeme Brown
Leon Haslam in action (number 91)''Photo by Graeme Brown

Pata Honda World Superbike riders Leon Haslam and Michel Fabrizio left France empty-handed last weekend after a frustrating 13th round event at Magny-Cours in France.

With rain affecting much of the practice sessions at the 4.411km circuit, dry track time had been limited over the weekend, but the rain was kept at bay for race one.

Starting from 15th on the grid after crashing during yesterday’s Superpole, Smalley racer Haslam finished in eighth position, one place behind his team-mate.

Both riders were forced to retire from race two with technical problems as series leader Tom Sykes took his second win of the day.

Leon Haslam explained: “Yes, we had a technical problem in race but I’m actually really, really happy that we’ve found an important aspect of the bike that has been wrong for many races.

“We changed that part for race two and it transformed the bike.

“It turned properly and did everything that it should have been doing for the last few rounds.

“It took a lot of inconsistency out of the bike as well.

“Starting from 15th wasn’t ideal but, even though our setting didn’t suit the big change we made, I was quickly able to get up to seventh and was catching the guys in front.”

Teammate Fabrizio added: “There have been some positives this weekend and I was able to understand a little more the engine brake characteristics of the CBR.

“I was happy with a second row start after qualifying yesterday and the first race was not so bad, although I found it difficult to turn the bike when the grip levels dropped. Race two was disappointing but we don’t yet know what happened to make the bike stop.”

Haslam is next in action in the final round, to be held at Jerez, Spain, on October 18-20.