News 11 May 2010

MotoGP: Capirossi and Bautista ride at new Silverstone

Capirossi and Bautista were at the new Silverstone recently.

Capirossi and Bautista were at the new Silverstone recently.

Rizla Suzuki racers Loris Capirossi and Alvaro Bautista joined members from the media at Silverstone in England recently to launch the build-up for next month’s MotoGP World Championship race.

Capirossi and Bautista rode Suzuki GSX-R1000 machines dressed in Rizla livery around the 5.902-kilometre circuit with the collective guests from the print, TV and internet worlds to give them a feel of the new layout at Silverstone.

“It was really interesting to go to Silverstone for a press day and see the new circuit,” Capirossi commented. “I was very impressed with what they have done and apart from a couple of corners it is very fast so I think it will be nice to ride there.

“We were able to do a couple of laps on Suzuki GSX-Rs and it was a bit bumpy, but I still think it will be good to ride a MotoGP bike there. For the spectators it will also be really good because it looks like they will be really close to the action.

“The British fans always have a big passion – just like in Spain or Italy – and it will be great for me to race at Silverstone for the first time and I think there will be a big crowd. When we come to a new racetrack there is always a lot of interest to see what will happen and I am sure it will be the same at Silverstone.”

British Superbike Championship leader Tommy Hill was also on hand to give non-riding journalists a taste of what to expect when MotoGP comes to the Northamptonshire circuit next month. Hill gave them the adrenalin-fuelled opportunity of a pillion ride, whilst Capirossi and Bautista gave other journalists riding tips around the track.

Ex-Suzuki racer and BBC TV presenter Steve Parrish was also at the event and rode a Suzuki RG500 from the era when two-wheeled Grand Prix bikes last raced at Silverstone.

Capirossi and Bautista were both really impressed with the work that has been done to make Silverstone the new home for British motorcycle racing, but are under no illusions that riding around the circuit will be a completely different affair when the MotoGP circus rolls into town for the fifth round of the 2010 season on 20 June.

“This is a very nice track and it seems very fast, there are also some very slow corners, but overall I think it will be very fast,” Bautista said. “There are some bumps in some of the corners as well, but I am sure when we come here for the grand prix that will be sorted.

“It is a big track and there will be opportunities for overtaking, so the racing should be good. We used some Suzuki GSX-R’s today and they have a lot more movement than our MotoGP bikes, so we couldn’t really tell what it will be like to ride here at racing speeds. I think it will be a very good MotoGP circuit and I am really looking forward to racing here.”