Contact with Marquez puts Alvaro Bautista out of Qatar race
The first race for the RS-GP was long-awaited by the entire Aprilia Racing Team Gresini as an essential test to assess how far development has come on the young project in an actual competition.
But contact with Marc Marquez in turn 6 of the first lap put Alvaro Bautista – the rider who had shown the most encouraging progress throughout the weekend – out of the game, damaging the front left brake lines and the sensors.
“Unfortunately the race test that we had planned ended straight away: Marquez got off to a bad start and he wanted to make up positions quickly, but without considering the fact that there were other riders on the track. In turn 6 he squeezed between Barbera and me, I have no idea how, hitting me and ruining the front brake area, lines and sensors. It was impossible to continue. I’m sorry because Marc is a good guy, but he has been too aggressive in the past in these types of situations. I think it is only right to point it out to him because it’s risky. Today I was lucky because I didn’t crash, but it doesn’t take much to get hurt out there. So, like I said, we weren’t able to complete our test today but we must not forget this episode and we need to be thinking about the next round in Austin already. It is a very different track than this one where we’ll have the opportunity to check all the data gathered this weekend to develop the bike and look for ways to improve.”