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Jorge Lorenzo pleased with Yamaha progress ahead of new MotoGP season

Yamaha are in a better position to take the fight to Repsol Honda ahead of new MotoGP season, according to Jorge Lorenzo.

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Two-time MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo insists Yamaha are in a stronger position ahead of the new season to challenge rivals Repsol Honda.

Marc Marquez has dominated the sport over the last two years for Honda on his way to back-to-back titles, but Lorenzo believes the fight could be closer in 2015.

After a slow start to the 2014 season due to injury, Lorenzo eventually forged his way towards the top of the riders' championship with eight podiums in the last nine races.

He finished third overall - with team-mate Valentino Rossi second behind Marquez - and believes he can surpass that this year.

"It's difficult to say [how close Yamaha are to Honda] because there's no way to measure it," he said.

"You have to go off the feeling you have and right now I feel very confident. I don't think I've ever spent that many hours training and I don't think we've ever planned this well.

"After the training sessions in Valencia [in November] we saw that the bike took a couple of small steps forward and I'm very curious to see what the bike performs like in Sepang [next month].

"It's looking good though, it's looking better than it did in preseason of 2014, so only time will tell but I feel good and I hope we do better than last year."

Lorenzo insists that he is only focused on his performance, though, and he has not spent time plotting Marquez's downfall.

He added: "I've never been a fan of training thinking of a rival

"I think that one has to focus on one's self and try to improve every day to become stronger, gain focus and knowledge and be better in general.

"I've tried to improve my handicap in 2014 which was my physical condition and I will try to polish some good aspects so they become better."

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