Kawasaki’s Leon Haslam has taken some small steps towards competitive laptimes at this weekend’s Imola WorldSBK round but larger ones are required if he is to get on to podium pace.
The reigning British Superbike Champion set his best time on a 19-lap old tyre this morning which was enough for fourth place but when temperatures rose in Italy, Haslam and the team were unable to get the best of the softer compounds Pirellis and he slipped back to seventh.
“This afternoon was a bit crappy to be honest with you. I felt good this morning, used one tyre and the 19th lap was my fastest for P4 and it was good,” said Haslam, speaking at the track.
“After lunch we tried to evaluate a couple of others tyres which should have been faster but went slower.
“I didn’t have a very good feeling with the new front or rear. It was a combination of the hotter temperatures, maybe we need to work in a different way but those tyres didn’t help.
We matched the laptime but in my opinion we should have gone a lot faster with the softer tyres. I did the wildcard last year with Puccetti and the issues are the same but we are a lot closer. This morning was faster than last year.
“We have made some steps but we need to make a lot more. There are still a few things my natural style is fighting and there are a few things that take a couple of sessions to understand.
“I do feel on the back foot a little bit, we are understanding each other more where I like the bike compared to where Tom liked it, which has been the main issue, and that’s more in Jonathan direction. We need to get together to work on the same lines, that is a positive thing.”