Aleix Espargaro was bursting with positivity as the NGM Mobile Forward Racing 'Open' class rider maintained second position on the time sheets at Sepang.

Espargaro's top lap of 2m 00.320s was only 0.281s behind the Repsol Honda of Dani Pedrosa, who moved to the head of the times in the afternoon after Espargaro had hogged the limelight for most of the second day.

He continued working on the set-up of his number one and two machines and tested new Magneti Marelli software in the afternoon on the FTR-M1, which the Spaniard believes will make a significant difference to the bike once tyre wear becomes a factor in a race situation.

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"Today we worked on the set up of the two machines and I'm very confident because last year I never succeeded to have the same confidence on both bikes," said Espargaro.

"Here in less than two days I have found a good feeling and I'm very satisfied. In the afternoon I tested the new Magneti Marelli software, which is a step forward especially when the tyres start to drop.

"I hope we can do a long run tomorrow and check how the bike work on the race distance."

Team-mate Colin Edwards, who celebrated his 40th birthday on Thursday, was 13th fastest with a time of 2m 01.996s.

"I'm satisfied of the work done today. I could improve my feeling with the front and I could make the bike turn better, but there is still a lot of work to do," said the American.

"I think I need to adapt my riding style to the new bike and also to get closer to the style used nowadays by the youngest riders in order to enter and exit the corners as I like.

"Anyway in the middle of today's test session I could do my best lap time and I want to thank the team for the great job."