On the time sheet at the end of the day, Johnny Rea was in fourth place, almost half a second away from Alvaro Bautista's Ducati. Despite the gap that separates him from the Spaniard, Kawasaki's color bearer is serene, also because he was able to find the answers he was looking for on Tuesday.
"He collected a lot of information today, and I'm happy," stated the Cannibal. "We managed to change the bike and understand which direction to take. Compared to last year, the impressions are better here at Phillip Island, although it won't be easy to find the right set-up."
Bautista is still confirmed as being the best. Are you surprised?
"Absolutely not. I knew very well that he would have been competitive, since he proved to be strong in MotoGP, and he'll be the same here."
He says he came to the Superbike to stress the fastest riders. Is that right?
"Honestly speaking, it's not at all stressful, also because we are only at the first race of the season, and the World Championship is not decided in Australia."
Davies is instead on the chase. Would you ever have imagined that?
"Chaz is one of the greatest talents in this paddock, and I think he'll be fighting for the title. Maybe he just needs some time to get acquainted with the bike, even if he has a great way of doing his job."
The race towards a victory seems to be between you and Bautista.
"Actually, I don't have any expectations for the weekend, since it's very difficult to understand what the dynamics will be. I had the chance to follow Alvaro in the afternoon, and I have to say that he is very useful. I saw he was really agile on the corners and especially in the fourth sector. I knew he'd be strong, but he's not that far ahead."
Winning in Australia is the priority or do you think you'll make do with what you get?
"I'm definitely here to win, and I'll do everything to reach that goal. Kawasaki can rely on a new engine, and we'll try to take advantage of it to its fullest. Unfortunately, yesterday I didn't have the best distribution,but today I felt strong, especially in terms of smoothness and the rear tire."