Valentino Rossi gave the thumbs up to a new swing-arm and chassis from Yamaha, which the Italian star tried on the final day of the Valencia MotoGP test.

Rossi, who clinched second place in the championship with a fine runner-up finish in the season finale in Spain on Sunday, was fifth fastest as the test concluded on Wednesday, lapping in 1m 31.301s as he finished 0.328s down on Repsol Honda rider Marc Marquez's standout lap of 1m 30.973s.

"We had some different stuff that we wanted to try, so we waited yesterday in the wet and worked a little bit on it today. Today was important, because it was the last day of testing before the winter and I feel good with the bike," Rossi said.

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"We have important stuff to try. We have a different way to follow for the new bike. A different chassis, engine and swing-arm. I try everything and I give my impression.

"We also tried different parts to follow the new weight limit of the bike. I think we can go back home very satisfied about the season and the weekend. We are fast so far and also in the 'time-attack'. So now we are ready for a little bit of holiday," he added.

"More or less everything about it was positive, so we did a good job today. From one side we need a bit of rest because it has been a long season, but on the other side I'm sure that in two or three weeks time we will miss the racing, but now it's winter time so it's time to relax."

Rossi, though, is still waiting on a new gearbox from Yamaha featuring seamless downshifts similar to that already used by Honda.

"We will use next year, I hope we have it as soon as possible but I don't here," he said.

"For me the chassis [is the most positive thing he tested]. We improve a bit on the entry to the corner and for me this is important. The swing-arm I know there is some good and some bad [points] to understand. The engine is a little bit better so it's a good step," Rossi added.

"Now we wait for something else from Yamaha during the winter but we finish the season being close to the top Honda in the last test. Also in Valencia [the race] so I think we can be competitive."


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It never really sunk in until reading this that Rossi an Lorenzo accomplished all they did this year without the trick gearbox Honda has. It seems to be the one element we can all agree is a real boon to Honda, and if it really makes the bike that much easier to ride, I can only imagine what Rossi can do next year, especially since this year's Yamaha (first half of the season, at least) was considered second best even without the transmission deficit.