With just over half of pre-season MotoGP testing still to go, it looks as though Honda has settled on its 2018 engine spec.

The factory Repsol team had three different engines at the opening Sepang test; a 2017, 2018 Valencia test and a brand new version to try.

After leading much of the day one timesheets in Thailand on his way to an eventual third place, just 0.115s behind LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow, reigning world champion Marc Marquez stated that the newer one is now the focus of their attention.

"It's more clear," Marquez said of the engine situation. "We concentrated more on the last version because after we analyzed the Sepang test data, the Japanese staff believe in that direction.

"All three riders who tried that engine, we believe it also," he added, also referring to team-mate Dani Pedrosa and Crutchlow. "Yes, we need to manage a few problems still, but we are concentrating on that direction, to be clear."

However Marquez admitted that the scorching hot temperatures mean engine character can be deceptive.

"Of course, it's difficult because Malaysia and Buriram, the track temperatures are very similar, and it's difficult to understand the engine, especially.

"Because when you feel the engine there is less torque [in the heat], so we need more torque. But then when we arrive in Europe with a shorter gearbox on shorter tracks, it would be too much torque.

"Anyway, it's the same for everybody."

Reflecting on what appeared to be a very successful debut at the Buriram circuit, the Spaniard added:

"It was an interesting day, because always when it is a new layout, a new circuit, it's nicer to ride, because you always find something new. In the morning, we concentrated on trying to find the lines, trying to find a good balance for the bike, the electronics.

"Then in the afternoon, we started again the 'preseason style', preseason mode, trying new things. It was good, it was nice, it was a good day. Quite early I found a good pace."

What new things did you try?

"At the moment we just tried some parameters on the electronics side, trying to concentrate there. Tomorrow of course we will try a few different things, but today we tried there.

"Some small things on the chassis that we also tried in Malaysia but we needed to back-to-back in another circuit. And it was the right way, so, I'm happy."

Crutchlow's day one time was a 1m 30.797s, already several seconds quicker than the World Superbike lap record. How much faster will the MotoGP rider go over the next two days?

"A 1 '29, I think so. 1 '28, I don't think so!" Marquez replied.


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