Bautista concludes Sepang test with busy final day

 In MotoGP, News

After two days of inclement weather the conditions finally held out on the third and last day of testing at Sepang, allowing the teams to work without interruption. Team San Carlo Honda Gresini rider Alvaro Bautista finished seventh fastest after making the most of his only full day of testing as he continued to adapt to the Honda RC213V. In the morning he had a minor cold tyre crash in turn eight which he escaped without injury, but made one of his machines unusable. Despite this he was still able to put in 51 laps.

With his lone Honda, he concentrated on suspension settings, both front and rear, and finished the test nearly a second closer to Stoner than he had earlier this month, while also clocking his best ever lap time at Sepang. Rider and crew can head home feeling satisfied and confident before returning to duty at Jerez from 23rd to 25th March for the final test of the 2012 preseason.

Alvaro Bautista ( 2’ 01” 275 – 51 laps): “I am satisfied because we were finally able to get a full day under our belt after being here for two days already and only managing to get out on track for the first morning. Obviously it was a tough day because we had to pack everything in, so we started out first thing this morning and only took a short break at the hottest part of the day. We worked mainly on adapting to the 1000cc bike and even though I was tired by the end of the day I was satisfied with our progress. Unfortunately I made a mistake on my first lap of one run when the tyres were still not up to temperature and ran wide onto the astroturf and then had a small crash. Luckily I wasn’t hurt and we were able to continue working on the other bike, mainly with suspension settings, and putting together a decent rhythm. I am happy though because we have taken a big step forward and closed the gap to the top guys. We know we still have a long way to go but I am confident because the relationship with the team is great and I know we will make more progress in the next test at Jerez.”

Fausto Gresini: “This has been an important test for us because Alvaro needed a lot of laps on the RC213V to get confident with the bike and above all learn the methods required to work on a Honda, which is different to what he was riding last year. He also needs more time on the 1000cc bike because he has not had as much opportunity to ride as some of the other riders. We had some technical updates to test in terms of the suspension, which we are pleased with, but we also need time and information to get the best out of them. Overall it has been a positive test because Alvaro knows that he can set a better lap time and he has improved since the last test, closing the gap to the fastest guys. It is a shame about the crash because it set him back a little but we are satisfied and optimistic about the future.”

Official Laptimes Day3
1 Casey Stoner Repsol Honda Team 2:00.473
2 Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda Team 2:00.648 +0.175
3 Andrea Dovizioso Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2:00.802 +0.329
4 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha Factory Racing 2:00.877 +0.404
5 Cal Crutchlow Monster Yamaha Tech 3 2:00.986 +0.513
6 Hector Barbera Pramac Racing Team 2:01.231 +0.758
7 Alvaro Bautista San Carlo Honda Gresini 2:01.275 +0.802
8 Ben Spies Yamaha Factory Racing 2:01.432 +0.959
9 Stefan Bradl LCR Honda 2:01.492 +1.019
10 Valentino Rossi Ducati Team 2:01.550 +1.077
11 Nicky Hayden Ducati Team 2:01.609 +1.136
12 Franco Battaini Cardion AB Motoracing 2:03.490 +3.017
13 Colin Edwards NGM Mobile Forward Racing 2:03.681 +3.208
14 Yonny Hernandez Avintia Racing 2:06.632 +6.159
15 Ivan Silva Avintia Racing 2:06.785 +6.312

Source: Gresini Racing

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