Rizla Suzuki will be at Sachsenring in eastern Germany for the ninth round of the MotoGP World Championship with Álvaro Bautista looking to take the positives from Mugello last time out.
With his fitness back to 100%, Bautista is looking for a confidence-inspiring ride at the German circuit to propel him into the second half of the season. He was challenging for a top-six finish at the Italian Grand Prix before a huge front end slide put paid to his ambitions as he ran off the track and lost valuable time. Bautista completed almost 90-laps at Mugello in a post-race test and made some significant advances with the set-up, handling and electronics on the Suzuki GSV-R, all of which he hopes will assist him for the remainder of the season.
The historic Sachsenring track is situated near the town of Hohenstein-Ernstthal, about 80km from Dresden. The original street circuit was incorporated into a new purpose built track in the 1990’s, but modifications and alterations to the layout have meant that no part of the original track is now used. The 3,671m configuration of 13 corners is certainly a circuit of two halves; the first part is as tight-and-twisty as anywhere on the calendar, before the anti-clockwise layout opens out to include a scary right-hand blind crest taken at over 200km/h on to a fast downhill section, some sweeping bends and 700m long finish straight.
Rizla Suzuki MotoGP takes to the track on Friday for two 45-minute free practice sessions, followed by a further practice session on Saturday morning, with an hour of qualifying in the afternoon. Sunday’s 30-lap race is scheduled to get underway at 14.00hrs local time (12.00hrs GMT).
“I cannot wait for the race to come – it will not be soon enough for me! I made some really big steps at Mugello in both the race and the test. We now have all that info to use at Sachsenring and the rest of the tracks this season. I think we are capable of running with the top-six or seven at most tracks now and just need a little bit of something to get us there – I don’t know if it’s luck or what it is, but we will keep trying until we find it! I like the Sachsenring circuit and I’ve been on the podium there three times. It is not an easy track to get the bike set-up right for, but when you do it’s great fun to ride at. It’s about a lot of edge grip, so we will have to work on that and get the bike set-up as quickly as we can.”