Despite a brilliant race two performance at San Juan, Jonathan Rea lost more ground to WorldSBK championship leader Toprak Razgatlioglu over the weekend. 

A 24 point gap heading into the Argentine round has now been extended to 30 with just the season finale in Indonesia to come next month. 

But while Rea struggled to match Razgatlioglu’s pace for much of the weekend, race two saw a huge turnaround in performance as Rea was not only able to challenge the Yamaha man, but instead beat his title rival to second place. 

It was a result indicative of a six-time world champion, and one that leaves Rea with a glimmer of hope ahead of the final round. 

Speaking after the race, Rea added: "It’s not the result but I’m really happy with how I felt on the bike today. We tried something really strange with the bike that you wouldn’t consider, and it transformed, especially the grip level I had from the beginning. 

"I’ve been struggling all weekend to really make the tyre work in the initial laps, and I had it. 

"The combination of tyres worked really well, the SC2 front and SCX rear. I enjoyed the bike, that was important. 

"I struggled on Saturday to really put the Pirelli rubber on the tarmac, to really dig in and go with the other guys. Today, I had that traction, I had the feeling."

While Rea managed to claim his best finish of the weekend, the Kawasaki rider was left a little disappointed as he felt a race win was possible had he not focused solely on Razgatlioglu early on. 

"I just lost a little bit of time behind Toprak, so Scott [Redding] was able to really go. From that point on it was almost about sitting on my ground, waiting for a mistake from Toprak and concentrating on him, forgetting about the race win," said Rea.  

"Maybe I should’ve tried a bit harder because I think my pace was really good at the end and I could’ve really fought for that win."