WHEN it comes to near misses, Coolangatta's Karl Muggeridge knows the term only too well after coming desperately close to finishing in the top 15 in round three of the 2009 Superbike World Championships held at the Ricardo Tormo track in Valencia, Spain.
Muggeridge, or 'Mugga', finished in 16th position after race one and couldn't manage to improve his race two position, crossing the line in 19th place.
By missing out on finishing in the top 15, Muggeridge was unable to chalk up race points.
After gaining an advantage with a good solid start, which saw him catapult his way up several positions, Muggeridge “slid his way around” for the rest of 23 laps with tyre and power problems being an obstacle in the his quest for his first points of the season.
Despite not scoring, Muggeridge overcame many engine and bike part difficulties to improve on his qualifying positions just over a month after joining forces with his new Suzuki team.
“Since Qatar and Australia we had for Valencia quite a big step for the engine, but we were unable to get maximum potential out of the engine because we were unable to calibrate the electronics correctly,” Muggeridge said after the races in Spain.
“We're testing Thursday and Friday in Monza so we have new engine parts and will be able to calibrate the electronics so the bike will run correctly.
“(We'll) then be able to use some engine management like tractions control and wheelie control but the first thing will get the engine management going to the full power potential going.
Although finishing in a lower position, Muggeridge said that his second race felt much more comfortable and faster than his first.
“We had a rear tyre that wasn't particularly well and (I) slid my way around for the whole 23 laps,” Muggeridge said of the first race.
Muggeridge was optimistic of improving further when he and his team conduct tests on various bike parts between now and the qualifying races for round four.
The championship continues from April 24-26 at the TT Circuit in Assen, the Netherlands.