Despite Honda enduring a terrible 2022 MotoGP season, while pre-season testing for 2023 suggests another difficult year is in store, Rins has found the switch from Suzuki to be a smooth one. 

Rins ended last season with two wins from the final three Grand Prix, but given the form shown by many Ducati riders and all four Aprilias, such results aboard the RC213V look like they will have to wait a considerable amount of time. 

In terms of leading the Japanese manufacturer’s charge, Rins was the top Honda rider for the second time this pre-season after finishing 11th on the opening day of testing in Portimao. However, the margin to Francesco Bagnaia was a sizable eight tenths. 

With that said, Cecchinello told that Rins and the team are in a good place ahead of the new campaign: "Alex Rins in particular likes the Honda. We were a little bit concerned about his adaptation from his previous bike, but he said that his feeling is getting better and better. 

"We are testing and comparing the parts. Here, we have some chassis updates and new aerodynamic parts to test. 

"It’s a process that Alex is understanding more and more on the Honda bike. Thanks to the new parts we can reduce the gap to the top of the ranking. We are quite positive about the start of the season." 

Joan Mir quickest of the factory Honda riders, but can it continue at the MotoGP season-opener?

Faster than Marc Marquez on day-one, Mir is currently five tenths clear of the eight-time world champion on the final day of pre-season testing although the two riders have been on different programs throughout the day.

This comes after a tough outing in Sepang for the former Suzuki rider, who like Rins, is riding a different MotoGP bike other than the GSX-RR for the first time in his career in 2023. 

Speaking after day-one, Mir added: "We spent a lot of our time working between two different bikes, comparing them back-to-back towards the end. We have to keep on working to improve the bike in a few areas, especially in the turning. 

"I am feeling really good in the change of direction and we are looking quite fast in some sectors and need to have this speed everywhere. 

"There’s still one more day to go and time to keep on working to make another step."