Repsol Suter Moto2 star Marc Marquez emerged from the final pre-season test with a spring in his step after exceeding expectations at Jerez.
The 19-year-old was facing his rivals on track for the first time after he was forced to embark on a five-month lay-off after suffering eyesight problems following a crash at the penultimate round of the season in Malaysia in 2011.
Marquez, title runner-up last season, insists he has now fully recovered and today clocked a best lap of 1m 42.430s to take the fifth fastest time, just 0.447s adrift of Italtrans rider Claudio Corti's top time.
“The overall evaluation of this test is very positive, especially considering the situation that we were in compared to now. I think that we should be very happy with the results from these three days,” said Marquez.
“We have been steadily re-finding our confidence with the bike, because you can't help but lose that a little after five months out. We started to try out some changes to the configuration and are getting closer to the lead riders, who are still a little ahead of us. In any case, everything went better than I was expecting.
“The next challenge will be Qatar and logically we won't be at 100% there in terms of kilometres because we haven't had the time with the Moto2 bike, but we will have to have patience and make the most of the situation.”
Marquez was involved in a collision with Gino Rea on the final day of the test, but both riders fortunately escaped injury.