Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso is still seeking the extra level of consistency he craves to enable the Italian rider to keep pace with the factory Honda and Yamaha riders over a full race distance.

Dovizioso put the GP14.3 into second place on the Sepang leaderboard on Thursday with a fastest lap in 2m 00.015s as he completed day two only 0.052s behind Movistar Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo, albeit with a time gained using the soft tyre available to the Open class and 'Factory 2' riders.

"We are still not as fast consistently as our competitors for the race but today I'm really happy about our pace and we improved a little bit with the bike, very small things in the chassis and electronic set-ups," said Dovizioso.

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"I feel good that I can do the lap time when I want to and the first test went very well. The understeer is still the same as before and we're not as consistent as our competitors.

"We made 50 laps and it was good for me to train on the bike in these conditions. My pace was quite consistent and I'm happy with that. I'm happy with the lap time from today but I wanted to see a 1m59!"

Asked if the revised GP14.3 machine was an improvement over the previous model during longer runs and in terms of tyre drop-off after half race distance, Dovizioso added: "The bike is very similar and the limit is from the bike. We still can't ride in the perfect way but the target wasn't this in the test anyway, because we knew that we couldn't fix this in this test.

"Tomorrow we'll use one tyre and to set the fast time we will have to do the time on that lap. I used the soft tyre for my fastest lap and I don't know how much it gave me, but on that lap I was riding with the same tyre as my competitors and we had a similar pace.

"In the 15 laps that I made I was really happy with the pace, the lap time wasn't special but it was better than last year," he added.

Andrea Iannone was fifth fastest on the second of the factory Desmosedici machines, bettering his time from Wednesday by a full second to lap in 2m 00.391s on a hard compound tyre late in the afternoon.

Both riders will have the chance to ride Ducati's new GP15 machine at the second Sepang test later this month.