Jonathan Rea says he is starting to feel as though he has a bike he can push with once again as he and PATA Honda look to recover the form that saw him reel off wins at Assen and Imola.
A WSBK championship leader at one stage this season, Rea has slipped back in the title fight after lacklustre events at Donington Park and Sepang, prompting his Ten Kate Racing team to bring new engine braking solutions to Misano with a view to improving the bike's set-up.
With this in mind, Rea is satisfied with the progress made even if he admits his eventual eighth place on the timesheets doesn't necessarily reflect it.
“After a couple of difficult rounds at Donington and Sepang, we turned up here with some different engine brake strategies,” said Rea, who won his first WSBK race at Misano back in 2009. “To be honest, we got off to a slow start developing that and getting some base settings into it this morning. Our position of eighth might not reflect it, but we're actually making quite good progress.
“I'm starting to feel like I have a bike that I can push again and I think we'll make some good steps overnight. I've given some good feedback to the guys and I'm actually enjoying riding.
“It's a shame we're not closer to the sharp end, but we reduced the gap to the front quite a lot in the heat of that second session and we need to do the same in the morning. I'm satisfied with our work today but we need to keep pushing.”