British rider Danny Webb was pleased with his progress on the opening day of Moto3 testing at a cool and windy Valencia track yesterday.
Making his official debut for the Italian-based Ambrogio Racing squad, the 21-year-old put his new Suter-Honda machine through its paces to set a best time of 1.43.178.
Webb ended the opening day of action with the 15th fastest time, with Maverick Vinales heading the timesheets from fellow Spaniard Luis Salom.
Webb is looking to bounce back from a nightmare year in 2012 in which he failed to score a single world championship point on the unreliable and unpredictable Mahindra machine.
The Kent rider, who is preparing for his seventh season in the Grand Prix paddock, told MCN: “The Suter-Honda is a completely different bike to what I rode last year, so each time I went out on it today I was learning something new.
"It was a productive day but today was all about learning the bike and blowing out a few cobwebs.
"The Suter chassis is good and the bottom-end torque of the engine is good too, so together the whole package is a lot better than what I was on last year. Today I was around the top 10 area and that’s a decent start but that’s not where I am aiming to be.
"I want to be around the top five but there is a long way until the start of the season and we will be working hard to make the bike better before the first race in Qatar.”
Webb said he had already been able to understand the KTM 250cc single-cylinder motor has superior speed over the Honda four-stroke engine but he added: “It looks the KTM is pretty fast in a straight line again.
"They had an advantage last year with the engine but I don't think their chassis is as good as what I am on the minute.
"And the KTM was incredibly fast all winter last year and with only eight engines per rider for the season we need to wait and see what happens. But I am a lot happier than I was this time last year.”
British rider John McPhee clocked a personal best time of 1.44.026 that put him in 24th position on the first day rankings.