Bautista Rounds Off Testing In Qatar

Álvaro Bautista has concluded Rizla Suzuki’s pre-season testing, with a heavy workload in Qatar ahead of next weekends season opener. Bautista tested many different setups to gain a full understanding of what to use next weekend, and also tested new types of hard and soft Bridgestone tyres.

As he started to make steady progress, shaving 0.4s off his fastest time from the previous night, the Spaniard suffered a big setback. Braking for the final corner at around 155mph he lost the front end of his GSV-R and ended up sliding into the gravel. The bike was ruined but luckily he only suffered cuts and bruises.

“It has been another big workload tonight and we got a lot done again.” said Bautista “We tried a different setting to try and get more grip with the rear tyre, because although yesterday wasn't too bad we still wanted to improve. I tested some new Bridgestone tyres tonight, but they didn't quite give me the same confidence as the ones we already have, but we still needed to test them so I'm glad I did.”

Speaking of his accident, he said “At the end I hoped to make a long run with the harder tyres, but it was too late. So instead I put a soft tyre in the rear and a hard in the front to try to make a good lap, but I tried to warm the tyres on the out lap so I could push hard and when I arrived in the last corner I braked very hard and lost the front, so I finished my day before the end of the test! I am happy with the work from the two days because we have a very clear direction for next weekend. We are in a much stronger position than a year ago and I'm looking forward to the race.”