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Bautista: “We need to look forward”

Bautista: “We need to look forward”

Alvaro Bautista’s impressive run of point scoring finishes in 2016 came to an end as he slid out of the Spanish GP.

After a delayed start to the 2016 season not much was expected from the new RS-GP and Alvaro Bautista, but the combination quietly went about their business in the opening rounds and collected respectable results. Three races saw three point scoring finishes and the Gran Premio Red Bull de España got off to a similarly strong start. The Spaniard had qualified in 13th, his best grid position since the Aprilia Racing Team Gresini project began in 2015. He quickly worked his way up to 11th and was able to battle with Hector Barbera (Avintia Racing) and Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) comfortably. His race would come to an early end as he lost the front on the sixth lap, but proved that the RS-GP should not be under estimated nor ruled out. The Spanish GP also saw Bautista debut winglets on his RS-GP, Aprilia keeping up with all the latest GP trends.

Alvaro Bautista: “After a good start that earned me a few positions, I was battling with the group between eighth and eleventh place when I lost the front end in a fast corner. It's a shame and I'm sorry for the entire team that worked so hard, but that's racing and it's only right to make a go of it. In any case this was still a very positive weekend. We did well during practice, I felt at ease in the race and I didn't have any problems battling in that group. Anyway, now we need to look forward and keep improving the bike the way we have been doing so far.”

Monday after the race gave Bautista a chance to rebuild his confidence as the MotoGP™ World Championship held a one day test in Jerez. Aprilia continued to show their commitment to the championship and brought along a new frame and swing arm for Bautista and Stefan Bradl to try. Due to the delayed start to the season the RS-GP had, this was a much needed test and gave Bautista a chance to assess new parts and experiment with different settings he would not usually think of trying during a GP weekend. Bautista completed 62 laps and ended in 17th, suffering a small crash. Now that the championship is back in Europe, Aprilia are hoping to run more tests between races, the first of which will be held at Mugello before the French GP.

“The goal today was first and foremost to test a new frame and a swingarm with different stiffness. I must say that I found particular advantages with the frame, whereas the swingarm needs to be tested a bit more before we draw any final conclusions. As for the tyres, I still like he standard solutions better than the new ones, whereas the tests we did on the chassis today suggests which direction we need to go for upcoming developments. Working in order was important, given the number of tests”.

MotoGP, 2016, GRAN PREMIO RED BULL DE ESPAÑA, RAC, Alvaro Bautista, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini

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