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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Haslam 3rd on Misano World Superbike Opening

Team Suzuki Alstare rider Leon Haslam ended the first day of qualifying at Misano with the third quickest lap and is ready to fight for a front row grid spot tomorrow for Sunday’s eighth-round World Superbike Championship round.

His team mate Sylvain Guintoli did not have such a good day though. He finished 12th quickest, but was unhappy with his performance, particularly in this afternoon’s timed qualifying.

Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha) was fastest today; half-a-second ahead of Troy Corser (BMW) with Haslam third and Michel Fabrizio (Ducati) fourth.

Leon Haslam – 3rd, 1:36.365:

“I’m pretty happy with how today went and I know that there’s more to come. The recent tests gave us some good directions to work on and that’s what we did today. The track felt very slippery and dirty this morning and when I got back to the pits the bike looked as if it had been on a motocross track! If you got off line you could easily get into trouble. The track was better in the afternoon and I’m sure that it will get better over the weekend.

“We’ve got some new-spec forks here and we’ve been working with them and trying to find a good balance for the bike – just like normal. At the moment I feel that they are not as good on the brakes, but better off the brakes, so we still have some work to do. It’s just a matter of understanding them and getting them dialled in. It’s going to be a tough weekend and the races are going to be real battles. But that’s the kind of racing I like!”

Sylvain Guintoli -12th, 1:37.314:

“I’m not at all happy with how today went and I feel that really it’s me that has to improve. At the recent tests we had some tyres that I got on really well with, but today we had some new tyres and I just could not get on with them in the same way. Obviously some riders get on very well with them, but not me today. So, I think it is probably my problem and me and the team will have to deal with it. We have got some of the other tyres, but not enough for every session and race, so maybe I will try and spare some during the weekend and use something that will make me happy. It’s a bit of a guessing game at the moment, but hopefully tomorrow will be better.”

Friday qualifying: 1 Cal Crutchlow (GBR-Yamaha) 1:36.288, 2 Troy Corser (AUS-BMW) 1:36.344, 3 Leon Haslam (GBR-Suzuki Alstare) 1:36.365, 4 Michel Fabrizio (ITA-Ducati) 1:36.549, 5 Carlos Checa (ESP-Ducati) 1:36.761, 6 Max Biaggi (ITA-Aprilia) 1:36.793. 12 Sylvain Guintoli (FRA-Suzuki Alstare) 1:37.314.

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