After a horrible first day of testing in Qatar, Marc Marquez made strides with his RCV213 on Thursday.
However, the Spaniard still has a long way to go to get himself and his bike in a position to be genuine contenders in the first race of the season on the 20th of March at the Losail International Circuit.
At the start of the second day of testing, things looked to be going from bad to worse for the 23-year-old as he came off his bike at the first turn of his opening lap after struggling with the corners for what seemed like the entirety of yesterday.
But the two-time MotoGP world champion recovered well to finish ninth fastest on the day, lapping in 1m 56.046s which was almost half a second better than his time yesterday. He finished six-tenths of a second off the pace of Suzuki’s Maverick Vinales.
“We made a step compared to yesterday and the bike is turning better and we tried to concentrate a lot on the chassis side, on the geometry and everything,” said Marquez.
“Now, in the corner on turning, I start to feel confidence, but we are losing a lot on the exit.
“At the moment it is difficult to find the rear grip and to manage this, and in motorbikes, the lap time is in the exit of the corner because then you can keep the speed during all of the straight. We are working there because we are losing a lot.”
Marquez also tested winglets on the front of his Honda.
“I tried them on the last run, only four laps, and the track was also a little bit more slippery because the humidity was becoming high,” he said.
“I feel a small effect, a small difference, but like you see, the wings are really small, so it is more difficult to feel, but there are some positives.
“Tomorrow we must try to make some laps to understand better.”