John Hopkins says he is back to enjoying his racing again and has given a beaming review of the Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati Panigale bike after grabbing second place in qualifying at Thruxton.

The 2011 MCE British Superbike championship runner-up is acting as stand in for the injured Jakub Smrz after the Czech broke his thumb in a qualifying crash at Snetterton in June and has seriously impressed since taking the team's best result of the year in the shape of a sixth last time out at Brands Hatch.

The American looked hot favourite to take pole position at Thruxton after notching up a 1m 14.588s in Q2 but a couple of costly errors in Q3 meant he was unable to replicate his impressive pace and had to settle for second behind Milwaukee Yamaha's Josh Brookes.

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"I was pushing as hard as I could," Hopkins said. "After Q2 I knew we could get that lap time in but well done to Josh he definitely got the upper hand on me in that final qualifying session."

Despite missing out on top spot the American is delighted with his performances on board the Ducati and says he is falling in love with racing again after a difficult couple of seasons and subsequently missing out on a race seat for 2015.

"The Ducati is working awesome and couldn't be working any better. It is one of the best bikes I have ever ridden," Hopkins said. "I'm enjoying myself on a motorcycle again which I lost for a couple of years so it is good to get that back.

"It is the most consistent bike on the throttle and I am able to slide it like in my dirt tracking days. I am having a good time out there."