Marco Melandri's debut on the 2010 Honda turned out to be a day to forget.
The Italian returns to Gresini Honda - with whom he took all five of his MotoGP race wins - this season, after a disastrous 2008 at Ducati and then a year of reconstruction with Hayate.
Much is expected from Melandri in 2010, but the former MotoGP World Championship runner-up got it wrong during his first day with his new bike - and debut on an RCV with Ohlins suspension - at Sepang earlier this month.
“It was very difficult. I made many mistakes,” Melandri told Crash.net
. “I was working completely the wrong way. The new bike looks very different to the Honda '09 and I was working in the same way as with the old bike. The new bike needed completely different geometry.
“It looks like the new bike has more weight on the rear compared with the '09 to improve rear grip. But I was putting even more weight on the rear and so the bike didn't want to turn because the front was too light,” he explained.
“At the end [of the first day] we understood what was wrong and the feeling on the bike was better. I wasn't very happy because we wasted one day, but at least we found out which direction to go in.”
Melandri went on to improve by 0.799sec during the second and final day of the test, when he set the eleventh fastest lap time to be the highest placed satellite Honda rider.
The second Sepang test starts later this week.