John Hopkins feels he is returning to the confidence he needs to be a more formidable contender in this year's World Superbike Championship having failed to crack the top ten so far this season.

The American has endured a frustrated return to international competition with FIXI Crescent Suzuki, the former MotoGP podium winner hampered by injuries that ruled him out of racing at Phillip Island and Donington Park and have lingered beyond.

Indeed, with just three top 15 finishes to his name thus far, Hopkins was thankful for the chance to sample Motorland Aragon in a test last week, not least because he heads back to the Spanish venue feeling far more comfortable on the GSX-R1000.

"After the tests in Aragon last week, I stayed in Spain and spent some time near Barcelona. It was great to finally catch up with some good weather, have some rest and do some training. I swam every day and find it one of the best forms of training for me.

"At the Aragon tests, we found a much better base setting for my FIXI Crescent Suzuki and, most importantly, made some big steps rebuilding my confidence.

"I really enjoyed riding the Aragon circuit and I'm looking forward to going there again, with the mindset of turning my poor first half of the season into a strong and positive second half."

Despite disappointing race results, Hopkins - who has so far peaked with an 11th place finish at Assen - has twice reached the top eight Superpole shootout.