2018-06-12 09:11
Spanish MotoGP team head to Barcelona with high hopes after Bautista’s ninth place in Italy
A crash for Marc Márquez in the recent Italian Grand Prix has opened a chink of light in the battle for the MotoGP title. The Spaniard’s advantage was 36 points going into the Mugello race but it has now been cut to 23 by a new man in second place, Valentino Rossi. The next challenge for the riders is the Grand Prix of Catalunya, which will feature a familiar layout at the Circuit, with turn 13 reverting to its previous design before the variations that were applied over the past two seasons. The majority of MotoGP teams have already tested in Barcelona and preparations for the seventh round of the season are well underway.

The Ángel Nieto Team arrive in Barcelona with Comapa as main sponsor and Álvaro Bautista in good form after his ninth-place finish at Mugello. The Spanish MotoGP team have not ridden at the Barcelona circuit since its most recent remodelling, having been forced to miss out on a planned day of tests between the French and Italian rounds. However, Bautista heads to Barcelona in high spirits after returning to the top ten, following a positive trend in his results since Jerez. His team-mate Karel Abraham continues to set the points positions as his main target, especially after missing out in Italy where he crashed out on the first lap of the race.

Álvaro Bautista: “We’re back racing at home and I am very happy to racing in Barcelona this weekend because it is a circuit I like a lot. The riders who have tried the new surface say that it is less bumpy and the corner that was changed to match the Formula 1 layout has gone back to its original design. It was always a nice corner and this year it is back. We arrive at the seventh round of the season on the back of a job well done in Italy, because even though we had issues practice we focused on our race pace and we were able to come through strongly, setting similar lap times to the guys at the front. We finished closer to the front two than we have all season so we are feeling motivated and ready to continue this upward trend and close the gap even further to the lead riders.”

Karel Abraham: “I am happy to be racing again in Barcelona and especially with the original layout at turn 13, rather than what we had last year. It is a shame we couldn’t test there a couple of weeks ago, when we had a day planned on track but couldn’t ride because of the weather. Hopefully this weekend is not too hot and the conditions are good for all three days.”


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