Jonathan Rea heads to round eight in Magny-Cours, France, second in the WorldSBK championship for the first time in 2021. 

The French circuit has been kind to Rea on more than one occasion as he’s clinched multiple championships there - 2019 being the last one. 

However, that’s far from a possible scenario this season as the Kawasaki man is involved in perhaps his toughest championship battle since joining the Japanese manufacturer. 

Whilst both riders are on equal points, Yamaha’s Toprak Razgatlioglu leads the way courtesy of his race two win in Navarra, while Scott Redding is also a title contender for Ducati. 

Speaking ahead of the weekend, Rea said: "After the last few races, on new circuits for us, I am really excited to got to Magny-Cours. 

"It is a circuit where I have a lot of special memories, where we have been many times in the past, so we have a lot of data."

Along with the data gathered from many races at Magny-Cours, Rea will also be using the data gathered from a recent test at Portimao due to the ‘similar set-up’ required at both tracks.  

"Thankfully we had a full day of really nice weather at a Portimao test last week to keep working with the set-up of our Ninja ZX-10RR," added Rea. 

"I felt very good there and the condition of the bike was very good. The bike set-up for Magny-Cours is very similar to Portimao. 

"It has a lot of heavy braking area but also changes of direction which really suit our bike. Now, with six rounds remaining in the championship we are past the halfway point and the next races will come along in very quick succession. 

"The target is of course to win and to build some positive momentum into the last part of the year, which is going to be very intense. 

"But I am excited, very motivated and can’t wait to get to France."