Bradley Smith is 'certain' of his potential to achieve a top-six result at Sepang in Malaysia on Sunday, with the British rider's confidence boosted following a promising winter test at the circuit at the beginning of the season.
Smith is eager to bounce back after a disappointing weekend in Australia, where the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha star finished in 10th place at Phillip Island.
The 24-year-old, who currently occupies sixth place in the championship ahead of the penultimate round, said: “I'm excited to be racing at Sepang this weekend and I am certain that we can finish with a notable result. We had a really strong winter test there at the beginning of the season which bodes well for this weekend.
“At that time, we tried a lot of different settings and I am very confident that we'll have a strong base setup to start with on Friday which will kick things off in a positive manner. Of course, we know it's a physical circuit and the temperature will be very high along with the humidity.
“This, of course, makes it even more demanding and additionally, the track is usually quite greasy at this time of the year and much more than when we test here in the winter.”
Given the prospect of changeable track conditions, Smith says it is critical to find the best overall setting on his satellite M1 during practice and qualifying to combat the expected drop in grip compared to the pre-season test.
“Our target will be to concentrate a lot on the afternoon sessions in order to get the best setting for those types of conditions, which is how it will be at race time on Sunday,” he said.
“Therefore, it will be important to run some good lap times and be as consistent as possible. After the difficult GP at Phillip Island, I am looking forward to the Grand Prix at Sepang where I am sure that I will be competitive and inside the top six on Sunday afternoon.”