Jorge Lorenzo says he felt like "the king of the world" after making a breakthrough with Ducati's MotoGP bike during the 2018 season.
Lorenzo had a poor start to the campaign and was only 14th after the opening five rounds.
But a tweak to the Ducati's fuel tank, coupled with minor updates, led to a stark turnaround in Lorenzo's fortunes as he scored back-to-back wins at Mugello and Barcelona.
He maintained frontrunning pace from there on, adding three poles plus another win in Austria, before injuries derailed the final stretch of his Ducati tenure.
"It was very special, because after one year and a half of struggling and not so much luck - I think the first real victory could [have come] in Misano last year [when Lorenzo crashed from the lead] - when it arrived as you could see in the images, we enjoyed it a lot," said Lorenzo of his Mugello win.
"The next race we repeated in Barcelona with lots of advantage, second [place] in Brno then the third [victory] in Austria fighting with Marc [Marquez].
"For two months we were the best. I felt like the king of the world and only bad luck stopped us getting more victories and podiums.
"These things can happen in MotoGP because it's a risky sport.
"I have perfect years, I have very difficult years like this one, but at least we demonstrated that I could manage the bike, I could ride it very quickly and altogether we made GP18 probably the most complete bike and we should be very proud about it."
Lorenzo, whose 2019-20 deal with Honda was announced three days after his first Ducati win, is convinced he could have mounted a title challenge with the Italian manufacturer going forward had the partnership continued.
"You have to be sad because the real challenge, trying to win the championship like Casey [Stoner] did in 2007, is not done," he said.
"We've got potential to do it, probably if we could have more time together we could try.
"I am sure if I would stay in the team, I would be competitive from the first race and not like this year. But this will be not possible."