Alvaro Bautista - 2006 125cc World Champion
Alvaro Bautista made his racing debut aged eight in a regional minibike series, eventually winning the series aged eleven. In 1999 he was selected by Alberto Puig to join the Movistar Activa Cup, finishing in fifth place. The following year he competed in the same series, but was injured. Nevertheless he still managed eighth and was chosen as a reserve rider for Puig's Spanish 125cc Championship Team.
His big break came in 2002 when he was selected to ride for the Atletico Madrid 125 Team in Spain, and battled for the national title with Hector Barbera. He took two wins that year, but it was also his first chance to compete on the world stage as he took part in four World Championship events as a wildcard.
2003 saw him make his full rookie year in 125s as part of the Seedorf Racing team alongside Barbera. He took a best of fourth in Australia that year, and back at home took the national title with two races to spare. In 2004 he took seventh in the world championship still with Seedorf, and stood on the podium four times. He stayed with the same team in 2005, but a change of machinery saw the expected title tilt falter, and he finished fifteenth.
It was a happy return to Aprilia with the Master MVA Aspar Team in 2006, and he celebrates his first World Championship with 7 victories (SPA, QAT, CAT, GBR, CZE, MAL, AUS) and 5 pole positions, with 3 races still to go in the championship.
Birth date: 21/11/1984 (21 years)
Birth place: Talavera de la Reina, Spain
First Grand Prix: 2002 SPA 125cc
First Pole Position: 2006 QAT 125cc
First Podium: 2004 GBR 125cc
First GP Victory: 2006 SPA 125cc
Grand Prix Starts: 64 (all 125cc)
Grand Prix Victories: 7
Pole Positions: 5
Race Fastest Lap: 8
World Championship Win: 1 - 2006 125cc
Total Points 2006: 280
*all data correct at 17/09/2006
2002: 125cc World Championship, Atletico de Madrid Team, Aprilia - 3 starts, 0 points.
2003: 125cc World Championship, 20th position, Seedorf Racing, Aprilia - 16 starts, 31 points.
2004: 125cc World Championship, 7th position, Seedorf Racing, Aprilia - 16 starts, 129 points.
2005: 125cc World Championship, 15th position, Seedorf Racing, Honda - 16 starts, 47 points.
2006: 125cc World Championship, 1st position, Master MVA Aspar Team, Aprilia - 13 starts, 280 points.
Some facts about Bautista's achievement
• Bautista is the sixth Spanish rider to win the 125cc world title, joining: Angel Nieto (1971/72/79/81/82/82/84), Jorge Martinez (1988), Alex Criville (1989), Emilio Alzamora (1999) and Dani Pedrosa (2003).
• Bautista has scored more podium finishes in the 125cc class in a single season (12) than any other Spanish rider, a record that was previously jointly held by his team manager Jorge Martinez (1988) and Emilio Alzamora (1999) with 10 podium finishes in a season.
• With his victory in Australia, Bautista is the first rider to win seven races in the 125cc class in one season since Haruchika Aoki in 1995.
• With a tally of 280 points Bautista has already scored more points than any other Spanish rider has ever achieved in a single season of racing in the 125cc class. It is possible with three races still to go that Bautista could surpass the current record points total in the 125cc class of 321 set in 1997 by Valentino Rossi.
• The last rider to go a full season of 125cc GP races and only miss out on the podium at one race was Kazuto Sakata in 1993, who finished on the podium 13 times from 14 races. The last Spanish rider to go a full season of 125cc racing and only miss the podium on one occasion was Jorge Martinez in 1988 who finished on the podium 10 times from 11 races.
• He is the first Spanish rider to win a world title in any class riding Aprilia machinery.