Álvaro Bautista has completed his first test onboard the Suzuki GSV-R by continuing to improve on his lap-times at a sunny Valencia today.
Bautista recorded a best time of 1’34.163 from his 41 laps during the final morning session of the three-day test, almost half-of-a-second quicker than he managed yesterday. He finished his first experience of riding a MotoGP bike on a very positive level and was extremely pleased with what he had accomplished during such a short spell on the machine. Bautista will now travel with Team Test-Rider Nobuatsu Aoki to Estoril in Portugal for a further three-day test next week.
Loris Capirossi (1’33.588, 43 laps) completed his test schedule at Valencia today by doing a final evaluation of some new aerodynamics and electronics systems as well as assessing some more Akrapovic exhaust systems. Capirossi will now have a complete break from riding the Rizla Suzuki GSV-R until February 2010 when MotoGP begins the test calendar for next year at Sepang in Malaysia.
The first race of the 2010 season will be under the floodlights at Losail in Qatar on Sunday 11th April, when Capirossi will make his 300th start at a Grand Prix event and Bautista will make his competitive debut on a MotoGP bike.
“We worked hard again today even though we didn’t have much time available this morning. The new stuff that has come to the test has been pretty interesting and the improvements to the engine are not too bad. The new cowling and pipes have both made some steps and overall we have improved by a few tenths on the lap-time. We really need to find about a second though and it makes me very upset that the rules have changed so much that we now can’t test until February. For me this does not help the championship because we need more tests to a make the bike more competitive. We will have a new bike in February and I hope it works well straight away because I know Suzuki is working really hard – I know that because they have come here with many things. The good thing is that I believe 100% in Suzuki and 100% in myself and my team, I will make sure my condition is good throughout the winter so I am ready for next year and I think that if we have a good bike we can be near the front.”
Paul Denning – Team Manager:
“These three days have been a good start towards the target of significantly improving Suzuki’s level in MotoGP in 2010. There haven’t been any fundamental changes to the bike here; those will come in February at Sepang, but the detailed work that Loris has completed, especially with the Akrapovic exhaust systems, new engine specifications and aerodynamics have made the bike easier and more consistent to ride. The lap-time isn’t spectacular, but it is a lot closer to the top group than it was during the race weekend so some progress has certainly been made.
“Álvaro’s transition to the four-stroke and to the team has been seamless; he looks very comfortable on the bike and appears to have ridden within his own abilities in this first test on the GSV-R. He has treated the three days not so much as a test, but as an extended track-day. He has certainly had some fun as well as beginning to understand the characteristics of the bike. Again today he didn’t run any of the updated parts, so to make consistent low 1’34s is a very positive start. He’s very focused and is an enthusiastic character to have in the pit and we are looking forward to having an enjoyable and hard-charging atmosphere with Loris and Álvaro for 2010.”