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Simoncelli protests innocence after Bautista clash

Simoncelli protests innocence after Bautista clash

Italian hit with 5,000 USD fine for riding in an irresponsible manner.

Hit with a five thousand U.S. Dollar fine and a ‘yellow card’ warning by Race Direction for what was described as ‘riding in an irresponsible manner’ at the Gran Premio d’Italia Alice, Marco Simoncelli was still fairly unrepentant about the clash between himself and Álvaro Bautista that left the Spaniard fuming.

Simoncelli had attempted a pass on the fast Mugello chicane, but found himself out of room when Bautista refused to give up the racing line. Both riders ran off track before later placing on the podium, but there were plenty of accusations and very little interaction when they stepped onto the rostrum.

“Marco tried to pass me at a corner in which he didn’t have any space. I’m happy to have finished on the podium, but not pleased about the move that Marco made,” said Bautista, showing diplomacy from his position at the head of the 250cc standings.

“For me it was a fantastic race, if strange, because I pushed very hard at the start,” was Simoncelli’s view of the tussle. “After four laps I had a big advantage. Afterwards Álvaro and Mattia caught up we had a battle. I tried to pass Álvaro, but I made a mistake. I thought that I could stick the move, but he closed the door and took the corner -without seeing me I think. I couldn’t do anything, we both went out and lost time. I’m sorry for him, but it wasn’t my intention to touch him.

“I listen to what Race Direction have to say, and give my own views, but basically I think that the incident –if a little abnormal- is something that can happen in racing.”

Simoncelli’s fine and the threat of the Italian’s suspension should he repeat the transgression in 2009 echo the penalty imposed on him last season at Mugello, when he was adjudged to have taken Héctor Barbera illegally out of the Italian round.

250cc, 2009, GRAN PREMIO D'ITALIA ALICE, Alvaro Bautista

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