Dani Pedrosa put Honda fastest on the opening day of official 2018 MotoGP testing, at Sepang on Sunday.

With the track getting ever-faster following earlier rain, the Repsol star punched out a 1m 59.427s shortly before the 6pm finish.

Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso was the only rider to join Pedrosa in breaking the two-minute barrier, lapping 0.343s slower.

Pedrosa - like team-mate and reigning world champion Marc Marquez (seventh) - had three different bikes, with three different engine specifications to try today.

While Pedrosa didn't state the difference between each, Marquez said he had one 2017 engine, one engine from the Valencia test and a new engine, developed since Valencia.

"Of course it’s good to start testing with the fastest time, so we’re happy with that," Pedrosa said. "We had some rain in the morning and therefore the chance to do a few laps on rain tyres, and we felt good from the beginning.

"In the afternoon, when the track dried, the asphalt kept improving lap by lap, and that was positive for the many changes we had to try. We have three bikes here, and they have the same setup but different engines.

"Basically, we worked on the engine package, trying to collect as much information as possible and to get a feeling with each different specification; that’s one of the main areas we have as a target for this test.

"There are still points we need to work on in order to understand more. We also need more laps on used tyres, as we didn’t get any long runs in today. Of course we’re still in the early stages but so far the feeling is good."

Did you have a clear favourite out of the three engines?

"At this moment it's not easy to choose!" smiled Pedrosa. "At the end the engines need a lot of set-up for the mapping side and these things and we didn’t go that deep in the set-up. More just the general things.

"Sometimes right at the start we lost time because something was not working quite correctly. But the bike didn't stop and the feeling was also positive. Now we have to check more data and decide on the plan for tomorrow."

That plan will involve trying to reduce the three engines available today, to two.

"We will try to have two bikes if we can, because it makes the work more easy. And then try to work more on the mapping side, regarding the tuning of the engine and see if we can improve some areas of the spec."

Pedrosa also expects to try the new 'hammerhead' fairing at some stage over the next two days.

"It's in the plan. I don't know when, but it's in the plan."

Comments

Loading Comments...