Niccolo Canepa says he can be very encouraged heading to the opening round of the 2015 World Superbike Championship after making good gains with EBR during testing in Jerez.

After its Portimao test was washed out by poor weather, EBR came to Jerez eager to get more miles on the 1190RX as the manufacturer looks to make a step forward in competitiveness after failing to score a point in a factory capacity last year.

In the hands of Canepa, the Italian lapped in a best time of 1min 42.743secs and though it was only good enough for 15th on the timesheets, it was in range with Canepa's best time on a Ducati during the Jerez WSBK round, as well as three seconds faster than his predecessors on the bike.

Furthermore, Canepa had expected the 2.4secs gap to the leaders - who were well below the lap record - would be larger given teams had previously tested in Spain.

"I am very happy with the two days because the weather has been great and we have been able to do a lot of good work. I am pleasantly surprised because since the other teams had already tested in Jerez and we are still learning the EBR, I expected the gap between me and the other riders to be bigger and it has not been so. The Hero EBR electronics are very good - better than my bike last year - and the traction and wheelie control work really well.

"Although I rode a twin last year, the characteristics of the Hero EBR are very different, so I have to adjust my style. And I really like what the EBR can do as I learn it. At the moment, I am confident that I will be faster than I was last year.

"Portimao and Jerez are two very different tracks, but between them we have learnt a lot, so I think the combination on these two circuits has been very good in helping us develop the bike. It was good to put in about 100 laps and I and the rest of the team cannot wait for our next test."



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