JAPANESE GP - Bautista aiming to fight at the front at Motegi

2018-10-20 19:38
Marc Márquez heads into the Grand Prix of Japan tomorrow with his first chance of lifting the MotoGP title tomorrow but his task will be made more difficult by the fact that Andrea Dovizioso, his main and virtually only rival given that Valentino Rossi is 99 points adrift with 100 left in play, will start from pole position. The Spaniard, meanwhile, will start from the second row in sixth, equalling his worst qualifying result of the season. Three Independent team riders will line up in between the pair, with Johann Zarco and Jack Miller on the front row and Cal Crutchlow at the head of row two, ahead of Andrea Iannone.

Ángel Nieto Team rider Álvaro Bautista is aiming to fight with the front group in the sixteenth round of the MotoGP World Championship at Motegi tomorrow. Bautista will line up on the fourth row of the grid at the Grand Prix of Japan, which should allow him to run with the pace of the guys in front of him and challenge for a strong result. His teammate Karel Abraham qualified on the sixth row of the grid with his best position of the weekend so far, after missing out on Q2 by just six tenths of a second. Well placed to fight for the points, the objective for the Czech rider is a top fifteen finish in Japan.

10th Álvaro Bautista 1:45.396: “I am happy because the feeling is good. It was important to get into Q2 because in other races this season we have had the pace to fight at the front but I have had to fight too much to come through on the early laps. I will try to get a good start tomorrow to stick with the front group and have fun. It was just a shame that we had a little issue in Q2 that was constantly bringing the traction control in, which cost me a few tenths. The positive side is that we have a good feeling with the bike for tomorrow.”

18th Karel Abraham 1:46.072: “Eighteenth on the grid is a good place to start a nice battle tomorrow. In FP4 we managed to set some consistent lap times and as soon as I went out in qualifying I set a 1’46.6. The second lap was heading for a 1’46.0 but I had a little issue so it could have been better. I tried again after that a couple of times but it was impossible.”

Source: Ángel Nieto Team

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