Rizla Suzuki’s Álvaro Bautista made good progress but lost a large amount of test time at Malaysia today due to a severe headache that sidelined the Spanish star.
Bautista (P10, 2’02.035, 35 laps), had already begun today’s wide-ranging programme and had tested new Marchesini wheels, Ohlins rear shock damping specs, and electronic mapping strategies before the pain and dizziness made it unsafe to test further. He received attention at the Clinica Mobile and rested for a few hours. Thereafter, he was able to continue with the day’s testing and to set his fastest time of the day – which was 0.2 seconds better than yesterday’s best.
Nobuatsu Aoki was again on hand to continue with his own test programme at the 5,548m Sepang circuit. He completed another 46 laps to give yet more data for Suzuki to use as it prepares for the new season. Honda’s Casey Stoner was again the quickest rider at the test.
Bautista will be hoping to be back to full fitness tomorrow as the pre-season test schedule reaches its final third. The last day at Sepang will give the teams only three more days testing – with the final two at Qatar in two weeks’ time – before the 2011 MotoGP season kicks off on Sunday 20th March, also at Qatar.
“It seems like at this moment the bike has better durability than the rider! This has been bad luck to get sick at two consecutive tests – I feel very drained but I am confident that I will be ok tomorrow after maybe 12 hours sleep! But there was also some positive points today – we tested a new rear swing-arm which improved the rear grip by a reasonable step and also a new engine map which helped the bike punch off the corner better. My best lap was with race distance already completed on the tyres, so for sure I can go quicker with new tyres but today my condition was not the best for a ‘qualifying’ style lap. I’m frustrated but happy – we have improved the Suzuki quite a lot since the end of 2010.”
Second MotoGP Official Test Sepang Day Two Classification:
1. Casey Stoner (Honda) 2’00.171: 2. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) +0.058: 3. Andrea Dovizioso (Honda) +0.360: 4. Ben Spies (Yamaha) +0.653: 5. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) +0.760: 10. ÁLVARO BAUTISTA (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +1.864: 19. NOBUATSU AOKI (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +4.411: