‘I am not yet at full condition but considering the situation of three weeks ago I am satisfied with what has been done in this second phase of the winter tests’ – Ben Spies
Pramac Ducati’s Ben Spies was hampered by the effects of the shoulder injury he sustained at Sepang in October during the final three-day test at the same circuit this week.
The Texan, who rode alongside Jorge Lorenzo in the factory Yamaha team in 2012, was 14th fastest on the time sheets on the third and final day of the test on Thursday in Malaysia, some 2.5s slower than Dani Pedrosa on the Repsol Honda.
Spies was behind Ducati test rider Michele Pirro, plus his Pramac team-mate Andrea Iannone and factory riders Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden, who were eighth and ninth on the timing charts on Thursday, over 1.5s quicker than Spies.
Nonetheless, the former World Superbike champion said he is ‘satisfied’ with the outcome of the second Sepang test after missing the final day of the previous shakedown in Malaysia two weeks ago to rest his healing shoulder.
“I am not yet at full condition, but considering the situation of three weeks ago I am satisfied with what has been done in this second phase of the winter tests,” he said.
“I could not ride the last hour of the day because of a small problem with the fork, but I have some more specific ideas about what changes should be made.
“I rode consistently focusing on the reactions of the bike in a variety of settings.”
MotoGP rookie Iannone’s best lap on Thursday of 2m 02.566s left him 2.004s behind Pedrosa, although his initial goal is to close the gap to factory Ducati men Dovizioso and Hayden.
“My apprenticeship continues, I am more constant and the feeling with the bike is improving day by day, nevertheless I have not tried the race simulation because we’re still working on finding the best set-up,” said Iannone.
“We have a lot to work on but I am very pleased with what has been achieved so far and what I could try,” he added.
“We’ll certainly get to Jerez with more data to be developed.
“My goal right now is to get closer to Ducati’s top team riders.”
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