Utah: Suzuki Alstare Monday report

LEON TAKES A SUPERB PODIUM IN RACE ONE. SYLVAIN'S BEST PERFORMANCE SINCE ROUND ONE. Team Suzuki Alstare rider Leon Haslam suffered the ups and downs of racing in the seventh round of this year's Superbike World Championship at the Miller ...

LEON TAKES A SUPERB PODIUM IN RACE ONE. SYLVAIN'S BEST PERFORMANCE SINCE ROUND ONE.

Team Suzuki Alstare rider Leon Haslam suffered the ups and downs of racing in the seventh round of this year's Superbike World Championship at the Miller Motorsports Park today. He took a hard-fought for runner-up sport in the first race and then had battled up to sixth place in race two after a poor start, but was then highsided from his GSX-R1000 and crashed out of the race. He got a lift back to the pits and then went to the Clinica Mobile where he had seventeen stitches put into his left arm just above his elbow. Fortunately he suffered no other injuries and will be fit for the next round in Misano towards the end of June.

His team mate Sylvain Guintoli had his best raceday of the year since the opening round in Australia back in February. He battled for eighth in race one and then took a superb sixth in race two.

Carlos Checa (Ducati) should have won both races today, but two retirements when he had been comfortably in the lead, ruined the Spaniard's hopes of glory. Checa's misfortune was Max Biaggi's gain. Once Checa pulled out, the Italian was able to race to the flag unchallenged and take his third double of the season and leapfrog Leon in the standings.

Leon - Race 1: 2nd, Race 2: DNF

Obviously I am very disappointed how the day ended. Crashing out is bad enough, but losing the championship lead is another. I always knew that today was going to be very hard and the races proved that. I was fortunate to get second place in race one and unfortunate to crash in race two. Carlos (Checa) should've won both races and I feel a bit sorry for him. He had led both, but then had to pull out. As a result, Max got lucky, but racing is like that sometimes.

I didn't make particularly good starts today and maybe that caused some of the problems. In race one, I was right behind Jakub (Smrz) when his Ducati blew up. I and the front of my Suzuki got covered in oil and I tried to use a different line to him so that I wouldn't crash on his oil. I think I was stuck behind him for over a lap, but luckily he pulled off the track and I was able to get my head down and chase after the leaders. I moved through the field and got into third and happy with that until Carlos stopped and I was gifted second.

I was tenth at the end of the first lap in race two and once again I had a lot of work to do to catch the leaders. I managed to get up to sixth after seven laps, but then the bike suddenly let go at one of the hairpins and I was highsided. I had a load of stitches put into my left arm, just above the elbow, but I will be OK for Misano.

Sylvain - Race 1: 8th, Race 2: 6th

Today was a much better day for me and I am happy because I think I managed to find a good rhythm and race pace - all this on my first time at this track. I had some little clutch problems in race one and starting from way down the grid is never easy, so I don't think eighth was too bad considering. My pace in the second race was a lot better and I enjoyed fighting with the other riders as I moved up the field. Today was my best result since Australia and it's about time I got back to being competitive. Now I want to build on this, keep up the good work and push hard right from the first practice in the next round and so be in a better place on the grid at the start of raceday.

-source: suzuki alstare

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About this article
Series World Superbike
Drivers Max Biaggi , Carlos Checa , Leon Haslam , Sylvain Guintoli