Inaugural MotoE champion Matteo Ferrari began 2020 as he had finished 2019, at the head of the electric-bike field during their opening test of the year, at Jerez last week.

The Trentino Gresini rider had been outpaced by Eric Granado on the opening two days, but set the fastest lap of the test courtesy of a 1m 47.494s on the final day, edging under the Brazilian's best by just 0.052s.

The MotoE riders had new Michelin tyres, Öhlins forks and improved airflow cooling for the batteries on their Energica Ego Corsa machines in Spain.

“It was a good test," said Ferrari, who completed around 50 laps across the three days. "We made a big step forward set-up wise and there are still some changes to make to understand if the direction we’re taking is the right one – and there’s no better situation to do so than during testing.

"It wasn’t easy, especially as we did not have the telemetry engineer with us since day two. We made an effort to fill his absence: from my side to make myself clear and from the team to make the changes we needed.

"I set some good lap times, which came quite naturally, so this surely is a good sign.”

For rookie team-mate Alessandro Zaccone, Jerez was his debut MotoE outing. The Italian was 13th quickest with a 1m 48.744s.

“It was my first outing with MotoE and it was helpful to understand the bike a bit," he said.

"You feel the weight quite a lot and the bike has to be ridden in a smoother way than a Moto2 one. You need to let it ride quite a lot on corner entry – which is opposite to Moto2 – and braking is a lot less.

"In general, everything is very different to what I’m used to. Having said that, we improved session after session, aside from a battery issue which didn’t allow us to make the most of FP3 yesterday.

"We’re working on it; there’s great enthusiasm and I must say that I’m happy at the end of these three days.”

A day after the MotoE test ended, the Jerez Circuit announced that 'following the recommendations of the health authorities regarding containment measures for the spread of the coronavirus, our facilities will cease all activities for the next 15 days. This deadline may be revised or increased if needed'.

The next and final pre-season MotoE test is scheduled for Jerez from April 8-10, depending on the coronavirus restrictions, which will also determine if the MotoE season-opener goes ahead as planned during the Spanish MotoGP weekend on May 1-3.