Honda star Marc Marquez believes he made a big step forward on the final day of pre-season MotoGP testing at Qatar.
Two-time champion Marquez, who admitted to struggling for the first two days of testing at Losail, was fourth-fastest today.
Although he was almost six tenths off Jorge Lorenzo’s pace on his Yamaha, Marquez declared himself pleased with progress – despite an early fall at the final corner.
“Today, honestly, I'm very happy,” he said. “I'm very happy because we saw the light at the end of the tunnel.
“I am happy because I come back with the feeling. Yeah, I crashed - but I know why I crashed - and about the rest, we did a big improvement.
“And I want to say a lot of thanks to my group because they are working very hard, we finished at three in the morning, and at 10 in the morning they were already here.
“Really happy with everything and today with the step in a circuit where we struggle. I am much more confident for the race.
“Yesterday I left from the circuit at 3am because I was worried about our level - so, yeah, happy with the final result.”
Tailing Lorenzo helped
Marquez explained that a run behind Lorenzo gave him cause for optimism.
“That is where I tried something different on the bike and I start to get more confident than the previous run,” he added.
“In that run I was lucky that Jorge was there and, you know, you also try to be smart, try to follow him and I was able to follow Jorge for a few laps.
“But then the positive thing is that alone, after that run, I was able to be fast on high-[1m]55s – and even when the humidity was more, I did a good run.
“I’m happier with the pace, but still not enough, 'cause still we must improve.”