Bassani was signed to replace the six-time WorldSBK champion following Rea’s departure for Yamaha.

Twice the top independent rider of the year with mtocorsa Ducati, Bassani was a no-brainer in terms of deserving a factory ride.

But after that door closed at Ducati, leaving for Kawasaki who have slowly lost touch with the Italian manufacturer and Yamaha, was Bassani’s only option.

12th fastest at the recent Jerez test, Bassani gave his first thoughts of the ZX-10RR and where improvements need to come.

“Lap after lap I started to feel good with the bike,” said Bassani. “It’s only the first two days but step-by-step we are trying to learn and to be competitive. We have some areas we need to work on but especially with wheelie.”

Bassani continued his assessment of the Kawasaki machine but admitting it is different to the Panigale V4 R ‘in all areas’.

Speaking to, Bassani said: “It’s different in all areas! The brakes and also in acceleration but it’s good; when something is new, you need time to understand and after, when you’re ready, you can push. 

“It’s not easy to have a different engine – V4 compared to inline four. We need more time; the right answer is ‘time’. 

“It’s special in KRT as there’s a lot of people with a lot of experience and it is nice to be part of this team. 

“I hope in the future to be like Tom Sykes or, maybe not like Jonny because it’s not easy but 10% of Jonny!”