Factory Yamaha MotoGP stars Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi will enter this afternoon's inaugural Austin, Texas event with increased confidence after an encouraging morning warm-up.

World champion and 2013 title leader Lorenzo was a close third fastest in the session, just 0.145s from pace setter Dani Pedrosa (Honda) with Tech 3 Yamaha's Cal Crutchlow in-between.

"This morning's warm up allowed us to improve the bike a lot and we are much more confident for the race than we were yesterday," declared Lorenzo, who will start third on the grid but had been over one-second behind pole sitter Marc Marquez (Honda) in qualifying.

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Rossi will start a disappointing eighth, but was one of the few to improve his pace in the cooler morning warm-up conditions. "I am happy about this morning's warm-up and it is giving us a lot more confidence for this afternoon's race," confirmed Rossi.

The chance to do a practice start on the actual grid was also praised by both riders.

"It was good for everybody to take reference points," commented Lorenzo.

"The start simulation has been very useful," added Rossi. "It would not be bad if we could do it at all races, so riders can fine tune the approach to the first corner."

Marquez, who will start just ahead of Pedrosa and Lorenzo, was fourth fastest in warm-up.