2011 Estoril MotoGP Test
Just as Valentino Rossi quickly returned to the 2010 MotoGP Championship after breaking his leg in Mugello, Alvaro Bautista equally impressed with his return at Sunday’s Portuguese Grand Prix.
Although he finished last, Bautista’s performance on the Rizla Suzuki GSV-R shows the dedication the young Spaniard has for MotoGP. And even after being in pain following Sunday’s MotoGP race, Bautista still lapped the Estoril circuit 17 times during the official MotoGP test on Monday.
During the test, Bautista, who broke his femur during the opening round in Qatar over 40 days ago, had a best lap of 1:38.850, which was three-tenths of a second faster than his best lap on Sunday.
Alvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki MotoGP) says: “My leg was really sore today – as I expected – but it was good enough to do four laps at a time and I really wanted to understand this new chassis, so I have to forget the pain and do some work, this is the life of a racer! Anyway, I am happy I tried it because – at least at this track – the step was quite big.
“The turning of the bike is improved a lot, this means I can open the gas much quicker and improve my corner speed and acceleration. The lap-time came a lot more easily with this chassis and when I followed Lorenzo, who was making low 1.38 at this point, we were really similar on the whole lap until we arrived in the slow chicane at the end of the circuit, then he disappeared because it’s just too painful to throw the bike through this direction change like I need to.
“But – apart from the actual position in the race – I achieved everything I wanted to here in Estoril so I am happy, and I will be stronger in Le Mans.
“Thanks again to everyone at Rizla Suzuki for supporting me so well, and thanks to Suzuki in Japan for working so hard to improve the bike. It’s been a difficult few weeks but I am looking forward very positively – there are many races left to show what we can do!”
During the MotoGP test, Rizla Suzuki tested a newly-designed chassis. Since Bautista was happy with the chassis, the team will use it at the Le Mans Grand Prix in two weeks time.
Finishing the Monday test for Bautista was Rizla Suzuki MotoGP test rider, Nobuatsu Aoki.