Marco Melandri, whose own Honda Gresini team has been publically doubting his commitment, thinks a braking breakthrough may finally have been made with his RC212V.
After claiming a competitive seventh place during Friday at Sepang, the Italian - heading for WSBK with Yamaha in 2011 - claimed that a radical set-up combined with a new part from Honda had made the difference.
"At last! Finally we have taken a step forward with our braking issues," said Melandri. "We have been working hard all season without finding anything but we made improvements in a few areas today and I am very happy.
"We decided to go for a radical set-up compared to usual and luckily enough it worked. Honda have also provided us with a new part for the front end that I feel has helped us take this step forward.
"Now we have to work hard without making too many changes and improve on what we already have to make sure we have a good qualifying practice tomorrow."
Melandri's hasn't had a top six finish since round four in Italy.
Rookie team-mate Marco Simoncelli was eleventh on Friday.