Home challenge for Abraham after summer break2017-07-31 08:43
Pull&Bear Aspar rider is the only Czech representative in the MotoGP class and hopes his local knowledge can help him get the best out of the Ducati GP15
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A run of four Sundays without racing finally comes to an end this weekend, as the MotoGP World Championship resumes after the summer break with Marc Márquez on top of one of the closest title battles in living memory. Four riders (Márquez, Maverick Viñales, Andrea Dovizioso and Valentino Rossi) are separated by just ten points, with Dani Pedrosa just 26 behind, which is even closer than the memorable 2006 season, when the top five riders reached the halfway point of the season covered by just 46 points.
The Czech Republic Grand Prix is the home round for Karel Abraham, who will contest the MotoGP race at Brno for the first time since 2015. The Pull&Bear Aspar rider returns to his local track after a strong first half to the season, which included his best ever result in the premier class, which was seventh place at the Dutch TT. Abraham carries the extra pressure of being the only Czech rider on the MotoGP grid but he is hoping to treat the weekend like any other as he aims to get maximum performance out of his Ducati GP15. His team-mate Álvaro Bautista returns to action after a summer that has seen him re-sign with the Pull&Bear Aspar Team for next season. The Spaniard's has a best result of fourth place this season, which added to a fifth, a sixth and a seventh leaves him eleventh in the championship. Bautista is looking forward to resuming at Brno, especially after his sixth place in Germany and because he believes the Czech circuit, with its hard braking and acceleration zones, can suit his Ducati.
Álvaro Bautista:“After such a long break it is fair to say I am really looking forward to racing in the Czech Republic. It is a month since our last race in Germany, where we signed off for the summer in a good way. It was a fun race with a lot of overtakes. Now we go to Brno, a pretty wide circuit, which is not easy because it has a lot of direction changes and you need clear reference points. It is quite a difficult circuit, quite similar to Mugello, so I think it should be well suited to the Ducati. There are some hard braking and acceleration zones, where horsepower is key, so that should help our bike. We will have to work hard from Friday to blow off the summer cobwebs as quickly as possible and reach our full potential.”
Karel Abraham: “I am very much looking forward to getting back on track, especially at my home race, which is also the first race back after the summer. The break was really nice but also very long. I have taken a motorcycle holiday around Europe but also kept up my training to make sure I am in shape for the second half of the season. I am excited to be racing at Brno, where the layout should suit me very well, although it is always a difficult one for me with the extra pressure from the press, fans, friends and family... it is a tough and busy weekend. In any case I will try to treat it like any other race.”
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