Honda's Jonathan Rea isn't underestimating the impact of tyre wear ahead of tomorrow's World Superbike round at the Nurburgring in Germany.
The Ulsterman, who will make his MotoGP bow at Misano next weekend as a replacement for the injured Casey Stoner in the Repsol Honda team, qualified in fifth place on his Fireblade today.
The 25-year-old had set the quickest time prior to the Superpole showdown, when Rea feels he failed to get the best from his Pirelli tyres.
“Today was OK and we have an OK pace but, when we put the qualifier in, the fuel mapping was maybe a little bit too conservative for that kind of tyre so I don't think I used it as much as I could,” he explained.
“Overall the bike's not so bad and we're definitely in the ball park. We still have a few things to try in morning warm-up to make our race pace a couple of tenths faster, but I'm enjoying riding more than before.
“I like the circuit here but they're going to be two long hard races,” he added.
“Fifth is the right side of the grid but it seems like the tyre wear is going to be crucial.
“We need to make sure that we've covered all our bases when the tyre drops off, because it's going to be critical for the last few laps.”
Italy's Max Biaggi claimed pole position on the works Aprilia RSV4.