Alex Lowes revealed that he and his Voltcom Crescent Suzuki squad have yet to 'break the back' of the electronic gremlins that have afflicted his recent performances.

The Englishman ended Saturday afternoon with the eleventh fastest qualifying time, 2.3 seconds off Davide Giugliano's pole position marker.

Having ended Friday afternoon in a promising sixth position, Lowes was unable to build on that result on Saturday with Imola's heavy braking zones exacerbating the electronics issues.

Related Articles

"We came in to the weekend thinking we had broken the back of the development work, but disappointingly it seems that it has not translated to the Imola Circuit," he said.

"We have suffered with big inconsistencies in the engine braking strategy and as a result the bike was tough to ride today, as Imola is a really technical track with lots of critical braking areas.

"It is frustrating as I know we have the potential to challenge but we will continue to work hard, step-by-step and come out fighting as always on Sunday."

Team-mate Randy de Puniet's trying weekend continued apace as he could only manage the 17th fastest time. The Frenchman suffered a big spill at turn three on Friday and admits it is taking longer to adapt to the machine's new electronics than he initially thought.

"Another difficult day for me as we are struggling to find the solution I need with the GSX-R's new electronics," said the 34-year old.

"The team are working hard to resolve the problem and we will continue to focus on this overnight, push hard and see what we can achieve in the races tomorrow.

"Imola is also a new track for me and this doesn't help, but we need some steps tomorrow to be more confident."