Jonathan Rea says he needs to 'start making in-roads to get back to the front soon' if he is to launch a World Superbike title challenge after another eventful day saw him appear on both the podium and the retirements' list.
The Northern Irishman was confident of challenging for victory in both races from fifth position on the grid, but his race one hopes were dashed at the start when he was muscled off the circuit by 'some idiot' through the opening turns, Rea dropping outside the top ten.
A determined fight back ensued, Rea rising up to fourth position before his pressure on Cal Crutchlow paid dividends when his former BSB rival crashed out. Coming after a high-speed off during Friday, Rea was at least pleased to get on the podium.
“I had a big crash on Friday and had to rebuild my confidence through the rest of the weekend and then some idiot let the brakes off going into turn one in the first race. I locked the front brake and went straight into the gravel which was scary.
“I really needed to get away with Max and Leon, but I caught up to Crutchlow and he was making quite a few mistakes when I put some pressure on him. I got third place but I don't think it was gifted and I think would have got it anyway.”
Getting a better start in race two, Rea briefly held the lead over Max Biaggi, but had dropped back to fourth when a technical issue forced him to retire on lap eight.
Leaving him 46 points adrift of championship leader Leon Haslam in the standings, Rea admits the next round in Spain needs to see the Ten Kate team getting on top of the bike.
“In race two I was holding my own with Biaggi but messed up the last corner on lap five so Leon and Crutchlow got by. I was still feeling pretty comfortable, but then heard a funny noise going down the straight a couple of laps later, so I pulled in the clutch and that was it.
“It's pretty frustrating watching the end of a race from the garage, and we need to make some in-roads to get back to the front soon. We're testing some new electronics here tomorrow and then it's off to Valencia, where we had a good test last December. Let's hope for better things there.”