Tommy Bridewell was in a positive mood ahead of qualifying for the sixth round of the World Superbike Championship as he began his first full weekend with Team Goeleven Ducati in Jerez.

The ‘super sub’ is getting a second race outing with the Italian team in place of the injured Eugene Laverty this weekend, though unlike Imola when he was only called up in time for FP3, he starts the Jerez round in earnest from FP1.

Even so, it was a tough day for the British Superbike Championship contender, with a time-sapping off in FP1 leading to a difficult FP2 that left him down in 18th.

Effectively learning the Jerez circuit again having last raced at the Andalusian venue 15 years ago on a 125, Bridewell admits he was struggling to adapt to the fast, flowing layout with the Superbike.

“We are just not quite in the ballpark where the bike needs to be and that’s the hardest bit for me,” he told Crash.net. “I’m just struggling getting the bike to turn and when I am getting it to turn it is [hard] trying to get it to stay there.

“Here I find there are a lot of fast, flowing corners and I need to use the brake to stop the bike for the corner but by holding it for so long, I lose corner speed. I am riding knowing that we are a way away from where we need to be.”

Despite this, Bridewell says the niggling issues means he is confident there is a lot of time to be made up simply by finding a comfortable rhythm on the Ducati Panigale V4 R.

“Because I am losing corner speed I am losing a lot of lap time. However, given I don’t feel quite comfortable on the bike yet and we’re only 2.5secs off, it’s OK. So, once I get the feeling like I did in Imola and like I do in BSB straight away I will find a second.”

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