Jonathan Rea: “Biggest area of improvement needed is still me”

Jonathan Rea says the biggest step that can be made to improve the performance of his Yamaha WorldSBK machine, is himself.
Jonathan Rea, Jerez WorldSBK Test, 31 October
Jonathan Rea, Jerez WorldSBK Test, 31 October

The six-time WorldSBK champion has just concluded his second test as Yamaha rider alongside Andrea Locatelli at Jerez.

Rea, who was third fastest during the post-season outing at the same venue, echoed similar thoughts as Locatelli, which was that acceleration could be improved.

However, Rea was very pleased, saying: “Of course, we're working on all areas of the bike, not just acceleration. 

“We still need to improve but compared to the first test with Yamaha, I feel we've already made a step. 

“A lot of it is down to electronic preferences and how to get off the corner and really trusting in the engine characteristics of the R1.”

Replacing Toprak Razgatlioglu who was Yamaha’s star rider, Rea knows that tailoring the bike to his style is something that takes time, especially with his style being very different to Razgatlioglu.

“Moving forward, I think the biggest area of improvement is still me,” Rea told “I have more of an understanding but I still need to tailor the bike to me. 

“I have a lot of confidence with the bike now but still need to ride on that limit. “I found much better front feeling than at the previous test. 

“I think an area we can try to focus to improve is traction from a bike and chassis setup perspective and just tailor it to my riding style, it's a bit different to the other riders. 

“I've been so impressed with Yamaha; the amount of items we commented on at the first test and they have addressed every one of them at this test. Step by step, it's been a positive test with no mistakes.”

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