Andrea Dovizioso is confident he will be back on the podium for the Portuguese Grand Prix after suffering a costly DNF last time out in Australia.

Dovizioso had been keeping himself in contention for third position in the overall standings with a pair of second place finishes in Japan and Malaysia, but a failure to finish on Australia has left him on the back foot.

Nonetheless, the Italian is confident he will be competitive again and sees no reason why he can't pick up where he left off at Estoril and Valencia.

"We head into the Grand Prix of Portugal with a lot of confidence and I think we can get a good result at Estoril," he said. "We had two strong second place finishes in Japan and Malaysia, and we could have had another podium finish in Australia too, so there's no reason to expect anything less this weekend.

"I know that we are competitive in Portugal and we are determined to have a good race and to fight for another top-three finish. Estoril is a track where I have achieved some good results in the past and, even though I was seventh last year, this wasn't indicative of our potential.

"The circuit itself is quite difficult because the layout is slow and narrow, which makes controlling the power of a MotoGP machine a major challenge. This also means it's really important to understand the track's characteristics very well and to find a good compromise with the machine set up . We will make full use of the extra practice session on Friday morning and we're looking forward to these last two races of the season."

Dovizioso is now 26 points behind Casey Stoner in the fight for third overall.


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