MotoGP newcomers Hiroshi Aoyama and Marco Simoncelli continued their 2010 preparations with a three-day test at Sepang this week.
Rookies are allowed a limited amount of extra mileage under the testing restrictions, and the former 250cc title rivals took advantage of this to gain more experience prior to Christmas. Apart from heavy rain on Tuesday afternoon, they enjoyed dry weather throughout the test.
Interwetten Honda rider Aoyama was the faster of the pair, his best time of 2m02.30s beating Gresini Honda's Simoncelli by 0.9sec.
"It was very important that we had the test in Sepang at this time of the year," said Aoyama. "The circumstances were ideal; apart from the rain on Tuesday afternoon. "I have to learn a lot, because the MotoGP bike is so much different from the 125cc and 250cc machines. I have to get used to the traction control and to the fact that it all works electronically. I am satisfied with the work of these days, but I want to do more."
Simoncelli felt he should have gone quicker, but was satisfied with his pace on longer runs. "I'm happy. I had hoped to go a little faster but the lap times were not our principal target here and I am extremely satisfied with what we have achieved," he said after finishing running on Wednesday.
"Fortunately, today, the rain held off and we were able to do a race simulation. I did 21 laps at a consistent pace in the 2m04s – even over the last few laps when the tires were almost completely spent. Before the race simulation I did a 2m03.20s but I felt like I could have gone a good bit faster if the track was in better shape."