Marco Melandri has pronounced himself satisfied with the performance of the hastily formed Hayate Racing team, despite ending the three-day Qatar test at the foot of the timesheets.
Born out of the remnants of the withdrawn Kawasaki factory team, Hayate had just a few days to get their structure in place, but showed flashes of pace over the course of the test in the hands of Melandri.
Riding the bike Kawasaki were intending to race in the 2009 season, while Melandri would complete the test in 16th position and last, a glance at the timesheets would reveal him to be just 1.5secs adrift of fourth place Chris Vermeulen.
Still, Melandri, who claimed before the test that he was going to use it to evaluate whether he thinks he can be competitive in 2009, was fairly pleased with the results, but admits the team is far from '100 per cent'.
“It was an ok three days,” he told the MotoGP website. “We are pretty far away with the rear grip and traction, so we really have to improve and make some big changes to understand our true potential,” reviewed Melandri on his first test of 2009.
“Right now we're not 100 per cent, so we have to work a lot to find out how close we really are to the other competitors.”