LCR Honda Idemitsu rider Takaaki Nakagami enjoyed a positive first day as the second and final pre-season MotoGP test started in Qatar on Saturday. The Japanese rider is continuing to feel his way back to full fitness after shoulder surgery at the end of last year, but coped well as the action got underway at the Losail International Circuit.

By his own admission, Taka struggled at the Sepang test two weeks ago, but looked much more comfortable this time out. He finished the day in 15th position on the timesheets with his quickest effort coming on the 30th of his 41 completed laps. The 28-year-old was encouraged by his performance and is now aiming to up his workload on day two of the three-day meeting.

#30 Takaaki Nakagami – 15th (1’55.627, lap 30 of 41)

“We are definitely improving the physical condition because the last test in Sepang was really tough and not what we wanted. But now, two weeks later we are here and the potential is improving and I’m quite happy about the feeling with the bike. Of course we need to improve some areas, but for the first day we are quite happy. The shoulder was beginning to hurt at the end of the day, but during the day it was much better than during the Sepang test. I’m really happy about this as it’s the most important thing and I’m looking forward to the second day. If the shoulder is ok, tomorrow we are planning to do race distance, which is really important for the race weekend, that’s our target anyway.”