Alvaro Bautista matched his best finish of the season so far by coming home fourth in Sunday’s Air Asia Grand Prix of Japan, equaling his results of Laguna Seca and MotorLand Aragón.
“After such a strange weekend with everything that has happened and the two crashes – one yesterday and one this morning – the race was more than positive,” the Spaniard commented on Sunday afternoon. “I felt comfortable with the bike this morning but the crash definitely didn’t help and the start wasn’t perfect either.
“I hadn’t done a single lap with the front tire, so I wasn’t sure how it would feel or how hard I could push it, but I built my rhythm up, made some passes and picked up a solid fourth place that could perhaps have been something more if we’d had a better start. Anyway, it is a good finish to a chaotic weekend and that is the most important thing.
“We have consolidated sixth place in the championship and now we need to keep working to take the next step with Showa, Nissin and Honda. We owe it to everybody that supports us, but especially GO&FUN.”
With just a single event remaining in the campaign, Bautista’s advantage over Bradl – who missed the previous two races through injury – is 14 World Championship points as the duo continue to fight it out for sixth place in the riders’ standings.