By Stephen English

Factory Ducati riders Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso finished ninth and tenth during the opening day of MotoGP practice at Philip Island, Australia.

The Ducati struggles to deal with windy conditions and with the seaside circuit especially susceptible to strong gusts, it was always likely to be a struggle for the Desmosedici riders.

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Ultimately Hayden was the faster of the pair, but neither was particularly satisfied, or surprised, with their performance.

"The wind was a problem for everybody but it affects us a lot," said Hayden. "Things went well this morning but I had a little problem with the sensor so the bike wouldn't shift into sixth gear and I lost one exit because of it. This afternoon I was struggling to make the bike turn. I stayed with the same set of tyres to start the afternoon and was able to get a lot of laps on them so the tyre wear seems better than in years past. It wasn't a spectacular day."

Dovizioso ended the day over one tenth of a second slower than his team-mate and elaborated on the wind issue.

"Today was very difficult because of the wind," said Dovizioso. "It's always like this here, more or less, but in MotoGP it's especially difficult with a lot of horsepower. At turns two and three you don't have the front to open the throttle and you always have the wind on your side so it's difficult manage. You have to set-up [the corner] on the wind but you have limits to that and it's not so nice to ride.

"We improved from this morning and changed the setup to follow the wind and go faster. Tomorrow looks like it will be hotter and hopefully with less wind. If the wind is less everyone can go much faster than they did today."

The set-up change from this morning was to put more weight over the front of the bike in a bid to keep the front wheel on the ground and avoid a wheelie on corner exits.