A positive day overall
Team Honda Gresini's two riders made the most of the first day of free practice in Malaysia, the penultimate Grand Prix of the season, as they worked on the set-up of their bikes at a circuit that was resurfaced only a few weeks ago.
at the end of the morning session made track conditions difficult for the afternoon, whilst further complications are expected tomorrow with uncertain weather conditions again the forecast.
Marco Melandri was on front row pace, lapping third fastest - 0.7 seconds behind Randy De Puniet, the fastest man of the day.
Toni Elias lapped sixth fastest and felt much more comfortable than he did a week ago in Australia, with this being one of his favourite circuits.
MARCO MELANDRI (3rd, 2.03.661):
"It has been a positive day overall for me. The new surface is still a little bumpy but the grip is good. The track conditions changed a lot from the morning to the afternoon and hopefully they should be better tomorrow. We worked well with the set-up and our tyre choice seems to be right. We're satisfied to have found a good feeling with the rubber on this surface and we still have another tyre to try tomorrow. The weather forecast is uncertain tomorrow but hopefully it will settle down for the race."
TONI ELIAS (6th, 2.04.031):
"I'm happy to be in sixth place but we still have a lot of work to do on the set-up. The rain slowed us down and the damp track in the afternoon was difficult to ride on because it seems the new surface doesn't drain very well. Anyway, I really like the layout here and we've done a good job today."