Monster Yamaha MotoGP rookie Bradley Smith believes he had a positive start to his 2013 campaign proper during the first day of testing at Sepang after consistently lowering his laptimes.
The former Moto2 jockey was 12th quickest on the timesheet but says he isn't looking at outright laptimes for the moment, instead concentrating on getting used to the YZR-M1 and achieving some consistency.
“When I started getting warmed up this morning at 9am and it started raining, my heart sank and I thought it was going to be a Valencia experience all over again. Luckily it didn't last and I got out on track and I am very satisfied with how today went," said Smith.
"The idea for this test is to keep it very simple and be consistent, so each time I go out I learn, understand and enjoy it and get some confidence. Each exit from the pits I wanted to get to the lap time I did before and then try and beat it by a little bit. I managed that and for that reason it was a positive start.
"This test is all about me learning how to ride the M1 rather than worrying about anything else like big set-up changes and we made good progress with every exit. All we've been doing is trying to make the bike as easy as possible to ride so I can understand the bike, the tyres and how the chassis works. We are keeping the bike very user-friendly just to help me understand the right lines.
"I'm still using Moto2 lines but being able to analyse Cal, Jorge and Valentino's data is a big help because you can easily see what you are doing good and what you are doing bad. All I'm doing is learning and trying to gain some confidence before we try and make any big steps with changes, which we probably won't until the next test back in Sepang at the end of the month."