Nicky Hayden admitted that there was no way he would have been able to take a podium finish in the dry at Jerez, as he praised his Ducati's performance in the wet Spanish Grand Prix.
The American had only qualified 11th, but got up to third during the wettest part of the race. He briefly faded to fifth, before regaining the podium spot when Ben Spies crashed and Colin Edwards retired.
"Too bad it rained... yeah, right!" Hayden joked. "Actually, I don't think I'd be up here in the dry so we'll take it any way we can get it."
He reckoned the Ducati was one of the fastest bikes in the field during the wet part of the race.
"In the beginning we were really good - I think our bike was really strong in the first few laps when it was wet. Man, I was smiling," said Hayden. "As it dried out, it got tough, especially the last few [laps] -- going down the straight on half-throttle. It had dried out, so the tires did their job. I know a few tipped up and helped me, and this and that and whatever, but we'll take a podium."
The Ducati rider thanked his team for its efforts and support during a season in which it has so far trailed Honda and Yamaha on pure pace.
"Big thanks to my team. It hasn't been an easy start to this season for us, but the team is working really hard, everyone is fully committed, and all of our sponsors and everybody are behind me," Hayden said.