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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Bautista races to a fantastic fifth at his home Grand Prix

Rizla Suzuki, Álvaro Bautista and Loris Capirossi all recorded their best race finishes of the season so far at the Catalunya Grand Prix in Spain today.

Bautista scored a career best MotoGP result of fifth, as he controlled his race from start to finish, before bringing his Suzuki GSV-R home for the team’s best result of the season. He got a good start from ninth on the grid and was up into sixth place at the end of lap one. Bautista benefitted from Andrea Dovizioso and Marco Simoncelli crashing out when they were in front of the Rizla Suzuki man, but he then never looked like giving up his fifth position, even as he came under pressure from Ben Spies on the final lap. This was a strong end to a very promising weekend for the Spaniard in front of his home fans – many of whom were sporting the colours of his own fan club.

Capirossi crossed the line just behind his team-mate as he finished the race in seventh place. He was relegated to 10th position early on, but battled back to make a number of passes before deteriorating rear grip became an issue and a safe finish was better than going for glory and risking a crash. Capirossi was pleased with the weekend and is certain that this is the step forward that the team has been looking for. His seventh position, allied with Bautista’s fifth, also gave Rizla Suzuki its best result at a MotoGP event so far in 2010.

Today’s’ race was held in very warm conditions and 81,426 fans witnessed another home star take victory as Jorge Lorenzo won his third consecutive Grand Prix to strengthen his lead at the top of the championship.

Rizla Suzuki now has a weekend off, after the busy three-week back-to-back races, before it heads to Sachsenring in Germany for the next round of the season on Sunday 18th July.

Álvaro Bautista:

“I am very happy because this fifth position is like winning the race after the last few races we’ve had. We really needed this result, for me, for my team and especially for Suzuki. I was very strong all weekend and was confident that I could do a good race here. I was very concentrated at the start because I knew if I could start well I could stay with the group in front. I did that, but I did have a bit of a problem in the race with the hard-braking places because I didn’t feel that the bike was entering the corners like in the practice. I got a good rhythm in the race and tried to control what was going on behind me and go for a good result. In the last laps I saw that Spies was coming very fast and I tried to push a bit more, but the rear tyre was used up and I couldn’t do any more, so I rode tight for the last lap to make sure I got fifth position. I want to say thank-you to all my team, to Suzuki and the sponsors Rizla and especially everybody that is here to support me, all my fans and family.”

Loris Capirossi:

“I want to say well done to the whole team because this is the first real result of the whole year. For sure we did a good job all weekend, but we made a mistake with the tyre for the race. All the information we had said that it was impossible to use the softer tyre for the race and we used our ones in practice because we didn’t think we’d need them for this afternoon, but in the end I was the only rider with a harder tyre in the warm-up and I had a bit of a problem with grip and then in the race I was one of the only ones with the harder compound and I struggled a lot with feeling at the start. It worked well in the middle of the race, but the performance dropped for the last four laps and I struggled to keep a good rhythm. This is the first time this year I have felt that the bike has been right and this for us is a really important thing.”

Paul Denning – Team Manager:

“I am so pleased for Álvaro here today, because to see him come back from his injury – and the problems it’s caused him in the last few weeks – to such a high level, is a fantastic achievement. He thoroughly deserved his top-five finish. Loris also looked strong – especially in the middle of the race – and only lost out to Ben in the final laps when a finish rather than a crash – as his rear grip dropped away significantly – was the right decision. The team prepared well for the race today, but most importantly the riders have some belief back in the bike and in their ability to push hard. From a riding performance and a bike setting point of view, hopefully this is the start of our season.”

Gran Premio Aperol de Catalunya Race Classification:

1. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 43’22.805: 2. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) +4.754: 3. Casey Stoner (Ducati) +4.956: 4. Randy de Puniet (Honda) +18.057: 5. ÁLVARO BAUTISTA (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +21.361: 7. LORIS CAPIROSSI (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) +24.181:

World Championship Classification:

1. Lorenzo 165: 2. Pedrosa 113: 3. Andrea Dovizioso (Honda) 91: 4. Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 69: 5. De Puniet 69: 14. ÁLVARO BAUTISTA (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) 25: 15. LORIS CAPIROSSI (RIZLA SUZUKI MOTOGP) 25:

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