With just three World Superbike rounds to go and Toprak Razgatlioglu extending his title advantage in Jerez, this weekend’s round 11 at Portimao is crucial for Jonathan Rea. 

The six-time world champion has won 12 out of the last 14 races at the Algarve International Circuit, and will need every point he can get over the Yamaha rider. 

Razgatlioglu has been the in-form rider since Assen - six rounds ago - taking nine wins compared to Rea’s five. 

"I am expecting much more from Portimao. I think there’s a few factors that should work in our favour there," said Rea. 

"It’s a track where I’m quite strong as well. We expect to capitalise. We expect a good weekend. So that’s good - it’s good pressure. 

"I like this feeling. I like the feeling when my back is against the wall. It’s nice. I like gritting my teeth. But I need a weapon to fight with. 

"You can’t just grit your teeth and make it happen. We need to fix the small issues we’re having in these hot conditions with the soft tyre. 

"But, I think the soft tyre is on holiday now until next year. I think Portimao should suit us a little bit better than the previous rounds."

Following Portimao is San Juan, Argentina, a track that riders have only been to once, while the season finale in Indonesia is an unknown quantity as it makes it’s maiden appearance on the calendar this year, therefore gaining points at a track where Rea’s expected to do so could be vital if he’s to overhaul Razgatlioglu or not.