Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bautista targeting top six after 'big steps'

Alvaro Bautista starts the second half of the 2011 MotoGP season, at Sachsenring this weekend, believing he can be a consistent top six challenger.

The Rizla Suzuki rider, who broke his femur during practice for the opening event of the year in Qatar, is now back to full physical strength and looking to exploit promising developments for the GSV-R used at the recent Mugello test.

Bautista has taken one top-six finish from the first eight rounds - a fifth place in the wet Silverstone race.

The Spaniard was challenging for a another top-six at the Italian Grand Prix, before a huge front end slide put paid to his ambitions.

Bautista then completed almost 90-laps at the post-race test, when he made some more 'big steps' with the set-up, handling and electronics.

“I cannot wait for the race to come - it will not be soon enough for me!" said Bautista. "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.”

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