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Leon Haslam heading to Le Mans in determined mood despite `nightmare´ start

Leon Haslam heading to Le Mans in determined mood despite `nightmare´ start

Leon Haslam heading to Le Mans in determined mood despite `nightmare´ start

I am writing from my motorhome in Bordeaux having decided to make the journey from Jerez to Le Mans with my driver Martin. It is obviously a very long trip but we have broken it up by stopping off to visit friends in Benidorm and Estartit on the Spanish coast so it has turned out to be a nice way to relax in between the two races. Now we are almost there and I can start to turn my attention to the Grand Prix.

If I am perfectly honest, this season has been a nightmare for me so far. In Japan I thought I could have been up there with the top group but in South Africa and Jerez we just had one problem after the next. The team are working very hard on lots of different areas but we are having trouble trying to turn the bike into a complete package and hopefully that will come sooner rather than later.

People are starting to question my ability as a rider but I refuse to let that get me down and I still believe I am as good as anyone in the class on the same machinery. I always felt that a 250 was suited to my style and I still believe that because my team-mate Jay Vincent is easily a top ten rider and he is having the same problems as me. The whole point of racing is to take the ups and downs with the same spirit and determination and I am sure this whole experience will make me stronger both as a rider and a person.

The next stage of my development comes this weekend at Le Mans and even though my record there is not so good it is a circuit I really like. In my first season with Italjet we had problems with the engine and couldn´t even start the race, whilst last year on the Honda NSR500 V2 I had a big crash on the Saturday and missed out again. It is a great circuit though and hopefully this year I will take some happier memories home with me.

250cc, 2002, Polini Grand Prix de France

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