Kawasaki’s Leon Haslam swapped BSB, WorldSBK and Suzuka Eight-Hours prep for IDM racing last weekend with a podium in race two as the reward.
Joining the Kawasaki Weber-Motos Racing team in the German Superbike Championship for the Most round - in preparation for his Pedercini wildcard at the Czech track next month - Haslam had fellow WorldSBK rider Leandro ‘Tati’ Mercado and BMW’s Markus Reiterberger as his main competition with the local rider, and three time IDM Champion, securing pole for the first race.
Despite the late call up to stand-in for the injured Bastien Mackels, and having no prior knowledge of the Weber Kawasaki before Friday’s free practice, the increasingly busy Brit enjoyed a promising weekend’s work. Securing fourth in race one, behind Honda’s Mercado, Haslam stepped on the podium - the first for Kawasaki in the series this season - in Sunday’s concluding action after a strong battle for third position and is not ruling out a return to the series if the opportunity arises again.
“Yeah, IDM this weekend in Most,” Haslam confirmed to bikesportnews.com. “It was a last minute call as team Weber had an injured rider. I was actually in Japan when they rang up
“Obviously I’m doing the World Superbike round for Pedercini in Most so I thought it would be good experience to ride the circuit. Completely different rules. You run stock ECUs and stock suspension, stock swingarms etc. so it was obviously a little bit different.
“Riding a stock bike with the TC turned off against the BMWs was very tough but at the same time, the team was really good and I had a lot of fun. We had a real good battle in race one and managed to podium in race two so all in all, we had a good weekend. Maybe we’ll do another race in the future, we’ll see.”