Reigning champion Sylvain Guintoli has played down his indifferent lap times on the PATA Honda during the official pre-season World Superbike test in Australia as he prepares to start his title defence this weekend.

The Frenchman has had a tough build up to first round at Phillip Island after hurting his back and ankle in an accident during pre-season testing in Jerez. Occurring at the start of that test, Guintoli returned to action in Australia having completed relatively little track time on his new bike, the PATA Honda CBR1000RR.

As such, the two day test was spent getting Guintoli comfortable on the bike again rather than chasing top times, which he says explains why he was outside the top ten in both sessions.

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"We're working hard and I'm actually feeling quite upbeat, despite being quite a way down on time," said Guintoli, who suffered another crash towards the end of the day.

"It was important to get back on the bike here because obviously at the last test I didn't get any track time, so almost no winter testing.

"I missed out on some good conditions in Jerez and I had to rebuild my confidence as well after that massive crash there. I had a little off today as well, which, in a way was quite good and it kind of woke me up at the end of the second day!