It has not been an easy return to the Superbike Championship in 2010 for James Toseland, but for the second race weekend in succession Toseland showed all his class and combativeness to turn a disappointing qualifying position into two strong motorcycle racing results.
The Yamaha Sterilgarda rider had the unenviable job of replacing the whirlwind that was Ben Spies in WSBK guise, and that proved more difficult than anyone could have imagined when improvements to the official R1 in the winter were initially a retrograde step.
But after hard work from team and rider, Toseland now has a package he can really race, even if qualifying is still proving difficult. So far in the first four rounds Toseland has been eighth, 15th, ninth and tenth on the starting grids, but his race results (after a disastrous first round affected by falls and injury) have been seventh, sixth, third, seventh, second and third.
The end result for Toseland is that he is currently ranked fifth overall in World SBK, and with a factory machine and 18 points scoring races left, who knows where he can move up to by the end of the season?
James Toseland (Double Podium at Assen) says. "We’ve had another tough weekend, especially Friday and Saturday, but we’ve pulled through. Once again the team has worked fantastically well, especially this morning, we had a new linkage system on the rear end just to try and sort some issues and it seems to have worked. It’s been a long weekend but to come from tenth on the grid and get a second and a third, two podiums is just a great result for me and the team."
"It’s been coming slowly, we’ve come from far behind in the first two races so it’s fantastic to be up there at the front and fighting. There are a lot of Brits out there, and we’re all racing at the front and doing a great job, everybody deserves to be in it. I’ve had great support from my family and friends and want to thank everyone for supporting me in getting back to where I should be."
WSBK Riders (after 4 rounds of 13): 1. Haslam 148; 2. Biaggi 128; 3. Rea 110; 4. Checa 103; 5. Toseland 86; 6. Haga 85; 7. Corser 68; 8. Guintoli 55; 9. Fabrizio 53; 10. Crutchlow 49
SBK Manufacturers : 1. Suzuki 148; 2. Aprilia 134; 3. Ducati 130; 4. Honda 111; 5. Yamaha 93; 6. BMW 69; 7. Kawasaki 19