Suzuki arrives for the start of the European season as the big factory improver relative to one year ago.

Back-to-back podiums in Argentina (Alex Rins) and Austin (Andrea Iannone) have helped carry Suzuki to 39 constructors' points, compared with just 16 at the same time last year.

With the more effective 2018 GSX-RR package having been largely decided upon following a private test at the Jerez circuit in November, the team is eager to see what they can achieve this weekend.

"After the two podiums in Argentina and Texas it will be interesting to see how our package is on a European circuit," said team manager Davide Brivio. "With Jerez we will start the long European season, with many races in a short space of time, and it will be a crucial part of the season.

"I hope we will be able to confirm the good form we’ve shown in the winter tests and especially in the first three races. So far we proved to be able to be competitive at the first three circuits, so I’m curious to see how we can respond in such a different circuit like Jerez.

"We tested here last November, in a test that was crucial for the development as we were about to choose the actual package we’re using now, it will be interesting to make some real comparisons and back-to-back tests to check how much we’ve improved since then.

"Getting consecutive podiums, one each, I believe that both Alex and Andrea can do a good job also in Jerez, their competitiveness has increased and we will do our best to deliver them the best possible package to aim for a good result.”

Inspired by his debut Suzuki rostrum, Iannone is eager to get back on track.

“This year we arrive in Jerez in a totally different mood and condition, we did some solid improvements and we feel in good shape," said the Italian.

"I’m happy to get back to racing after the good podium in Texas, it has been a boost; a proof of the trust in me, and a reward for the hard work that me and my team have done. Seeing the progress we are making and the positive path we are on, I hope we will be able to be competitive again and score another positive result.”

Home star Rins missed last year's race while recovering from an arm injury.

“For me this GP will be a sort of ‘rookie experience’ as last year I missed the race and could only test here at the end of the year, however I feel much more solid this year," said the Spaniard, rumoured to have agreed a new Suzuki contract for 2019-2020.

"For a few races now I will lack the ‘GP experience’ because of my long injury time out last year, but we have established a positive working method which allows me to look at any race with confidence.

"The early signs of this year proved that we have taken important steps forward and that we can be competitive. I’m not expecting Jerez to be a friendly circuit for us, but thanks to the improvement we’ve done technically, and also in my riding, we can look at this round with optimism.”

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