After another difficult weekend aboard his Milwaukee Aprilia, Eugene Laverty admits he does not yet have a motorcycle competitive enough to challenge at the front with.

The Northern Irishman started in the middle of the second row for Sunday’s second race having finished race one eighth but didn’t feel as if his RSV4 was behaving properly, Laverty suffering under braking and in the cornering phase.

Robert Cianflone/Getty Images Sport

Indeed, after climbing his way up to second in the opening lap, Laverty was quickly eaten up by the chasing pack and was shuffled down to seventh. The Aprilia rider attributed some of his woes to the high winds, which were pushing him off line constantly.

“It was a tough weekend overall, and I did what I could today to bring it home with some decent points,” he said.

“At the start I was up to second and was up for a good fight, but the other guys just rode around me. The win was really bad out there too and it affected us all. I was getting pushed wide by it a few times and they were difficult conditions to ride in.”

By mid-distance, Laverty had lost touch with the leading pack and had BMW’s Jordi Torres bearing down on him. Despite his best efforts, Laverty was powerless to stop the Spaniard from taking eighth away from him.

Struggling all the way to the flag, Laverty only just kept MV Agusta’s Leon Camier at bay to take ninth spot. The result moves him up to 10th in the standings on 30 points.

Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images Sport

Laverty hopes a day of testing at MotorLand Aragon on Monday will allow the team to find, what he described as, the ‘underlying issue’ which is seriously hindering him.

“At the moment we don’t have a bike we can fight with; there’s something we are missing. We need to find lap time as soon as we can, and I’m struggling to get it stopped and turned.

“There’s an underlying issue, but with a test day tomorrow I think we can get to the bottom of it and hopefully get the bike where we need to be.”

Laverty’s temporary team-mate Julian Simon enjoyed a strong maiden World Superbike weekend. The Spaniard was called up to replace the injured Lorenzo Savadori and, despite never having ridden the RSV4 before, Simon managed two points scoring finishes with a 13th and a 15th.

Read more from Lewis Duncan