CHAZ Davies endured a frustrating start to the World Superbike Championship (WSBK) season in Australia last weekend

The Ducati star from Presteigne had to be content with an eighth placed finish in race one before fighting back for fifth in race two at Philips Island in Australia.

However Ducati were able to celebrate a solid start to the season thanks to Scott Redding who ended third in both races.

After a difficult qualifying session that forced him to start from row six, Davies managed to recover six positions in the first lap.

The Welshman then ended his race in eighth position after successfully attacking Tom Sykes two laps from the end.

Davies began race two from the fifth row and from mid-race, an extremely competitive pace allowed him to get close to the front group.

In the last two laps Davies engaged in a duel with Alex Bautista to complete a fantastic comeback and finish in fifth position.

Davies said: “Unfortunately, the starting position compromised the opening race.

“We didn’t manage to exploit the Q tyre in qualifying and we have to figure out how to solve this problem.

“From the middle of the race, my pace wasn’t bad, I was lapping with times close to the front group but obviously, the gap was too big to try to catch them.

“It was a pretty tough weekend, but all in all, things didn’t go badly in race two.

“It was good to be able to get closer to the front group even though the starting position was very complicated.

“Of course I can’t be super happy about this weekend but it was very important to finish in a positive way. We still have a lot of work to do and I can’t wait to be in Qatar, a track that I really like.”

The championship heads to the Losail International Circuit in Qatar on March 13-15 before ending the month with the opening European round in Jerez in Spain on March 27-29.

Next month the championship heads to Assen in Holland with the fourth round taking place on April 17-19.