Ruben Xaus suffered another frustrating weekend at Assen, as the success within the Castrol Honda garage all went the way of teammate Jonathan Rea.
The Northern Irishman took a victory and a third place but his Spanish teammate could only manage eighth in race one, and a disappointing 14th in race two. And speaking afterwards, the former race winner was concerned with the gap to his colleague.
“Of course, I can't be satisfied when my team-mate is first and third and I am eighth and fourteenth. Yes, he won twice last year and has a great rhythm here and knows where the problems arise, but still I can't be satisfied.”
Tyres were the talking point for many riders at the Dutch circuit, and Xaus admitted he had struggled for consistency on each of the available compounds.
“We had tyre allocation problems here this weekend and we didn't have the right set up to make the soft tyre last or the harder tyre work properly. The A tyre was the good option for race one, even though the performance dropped off at the end.”
“In race two, the tyre was like it was at the end of race one, only after five laps. So we fought hard to bring the bike home with a slightly better set-up. Hopefully we will get more consistent track temperatures at Monza and other races. Now I know the bike much better, the team is working well and the gap is closing to the riders at the front.”
Ronald ten Kate also voiced his disappointment with the difference between his two riders, but the Castrol Honda team manager was hopeful both his riders who be strong in the warmth of the European summer.
“Ruben's set-up and riding style seemed only to work with the soft tyre, which gave him grip. Unfortunately, that tyre didn't work the whole race distance. We hope track conditions will be a bit more normal in the next couple of rounds to give him that grip with other tyres because, for sure, he's not in the position that we would like him to be.”
Round four of the World Superbike Champion takes place in Italy, with the riders visiting the historic Monza circuit in three weeks time.