Haslam aiming for podiums at Imola

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LEON HASLAM is looking to follow up a courageous opening round performance by adding two podium finishes to his 2012 points tally in round two of the World Superbike Championship at Imola, Italy on Sunday.

Factory BMW rider Haslam ignored the pain of a broken leg and consequent surgery to finish in 12th and fifth places at Phillip Island, Australia four weeks ago.

The Imola round � traditionally towards the end of the World Championship season in previous years � has provided Haslam with four top eight finishes from the last six races there with a best finish of fifth place last year.

“Imola is a technical and demanding circuit but with the improvements we’ve made to the S1000RR I’m sure I’ll be able to challenge for podium finishes this weekend,”� said Haslam.

“We had a really good two-day test at Aragon in Spain last week, my right leg is getting stronger by the day and I’m heading to a circuit I really enjoy racing at.

“�The circuit has a lot of character, a lot of undulations and some pretty quick chicanes so it’s important to find a machine set-up that allows you to get the power down to the ground early on the corner exit.”

Imola schedule

Friday March 30

8.45 � 10.15am - Technical inspection

11.45 � 12.30pm - Free Practice One

3.30 � 4.15pm - Qualifying One

Saturday March 31

9.45 � 10.30am - Qualifying Two

12.30 � 1.15pm - Free Practice Two

3.00pm - Superpole Final Qualifying

Sunday April 1

9.20 � 9.35am - Warm-up

12.00noon - Race One � 21 laps (103.656km / 64.370 miles)

3.30pm - Race Two � 21 laps (103.656km / 64.370 miles)

Points

World Championship points after one of 14 rounds: 1 Biaggi 45, 2 Melandri 30, 3 Sykes 29, 4 Checa 25, 5 Rea 22, 6 Guintoli and Smrz 16, 8 Haslam and Aoyama 15, 10 Berger 12.

Manufacturers points: 1 Aprilia 45, 2 Ducati 41, 3 BMW 31, 4 Kawasaki 29, 5 Honda 22, 6 Suzuki 4.

2012 World Superbike Championship: 1. February 26 � Phillip Island, Australia; 2. April 1 � Imola, Italy; 3. April 22 � Assen, Holland; 4. May 6 � Monza, Italy; 5. May 13 � Donington Park, GB; 6. May 28 � Salt Lake City, USA; 7. June 10 � Misano, San Marino; 8. July 1 � Aragon, Spain; 9. July 22 � Brno, Czech Republic; 10. August 5 � Silverstone, GB; 11. August 26 � Moscow, Russia; 12. September 9 � Nurburgring, Germany; 13. September 23 � Portimao, Portugal; 14. October 7 - Magny-Cours, France.