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10 days ago
By motogp.com

P4 and top Ducati honours for Rabat on Day 1

Reale Avintia Racing rider impressed immensely on the opening day at the Sepang Test

Tito Rabat (Reale Avintia Racing) will be hoping for more luck in 2019 than what came his way in 2018 and on Day 1 of the Sepang Test, he kicked off his season in hugely impressive fashion.

The Spaniard – who suffered a triple leg break at Silverstone last year – missed the last six races of 2018, but finishing P4 on Day 1 in Malaysia on his GP18 signalled he is back feeling comfortable on his MotoGP™ machine.

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What happened during Day 1 of the Sepang Test?

“Yes we make a fantastic job today,” explained the 2014 Moto2™ World Champion, who climbed the timesheets in the latter stages of the day to go faster than both factory Ducati riders in Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati) and teammate Andrea Dovizioso.

“From the start it was too long without touching a MotoGP (bike) and in the first laps the speed is so fast, but we worked well and we did a good job,” continued Rabat. “I felt comfortable with the bike, it worked really well. When I’m on the bike my leg is 200% no problem and I can ride well, this is the most important thing. I’m so happy for today but there is still two more days and this is just the start, there’s a long way to go.

Now on a more competitive package, what difference does Rabat feel on the GP18 compared to the GP17?

“For me a lot of things compared to last year. Maybe the front feeling, the bike turns very well and you can brake so hard and the bike turns, this is one thing. The other thing is the gas connection, I don’t know why, this year I can feel it much more and I have good connection with the gas and this makes me calmer with the gas, because if I open more I will highside. This has helped me be more gentle with the gas and to go faster.”

Can he continue to impress on Day 2? 

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Rabat talks testing after scintillating first day at Sepang