After a hard fought race finish the day before, Rizla Suzuki‘s Ãlvaro Bautista returned to the Estoril circuit for the official MotoGP test. Despite only completing 17 laps in the morning session, Bautista’s fastest lap was over a second faster than his fastest race lap and 0.3s faster than his qualifying lap.
This was mainly down to a brand new chassis which has performed well in tests in Japan, and performs so well that Bautista will be using it in the next race in Le Mans.
Speaking after the session, Bautista said,“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!”
He continued, with an assessment of the new updates, “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.”
He finalized, “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!”