Team HRC has concluded the seventh Superbike World Championship round at Navarra, Spain, with an eighth-place finish in race 2 for Alvaro Bautista.
First up was the 10-lap Tissot Superpole race, which got underway at 11 am local time.
It was a particularly short race, considering that the Navarra track is just 3.9 km in length. Bautista was in fourteenth through the first corners. The Spaniard was able to climb two places through the first half of the race, positioning twelfth on lap five. He continued to make progress through the final stages, making up two more places to cross the line in final tenth position.
Lining up for race 2 later in the afternoon, the HRC rider remained focused despite a short delay to the start, owing to a problem for another rider’s bike.
From twelfth, Bautista was straight up into ninth through the opening turns. Keeping a fast pace while battling with Bassani, the Spaniard oscillated between ninth and tenth position throughout the race. A little mistake from Van Der Mark in the final sector of the last lap allowed him to move up to 8th place in the revised standings.
In the championship standings, Bautista lies eleventh with 92 points.
Team HRC will be back on track for round eight at Magny-Cours over the weekend of 3-5 September.
“We did not change too much on the bike set-up from yesterday, because in analysing the data we could not find a reason for the crash in race 1. But we did choose a different spec of tyre today and I felt a better with the front, so maybe we just didn’t make the best choice for race 1. I made a bad start in the Superpole race, losing several positions and despite recovering fairly well, I just missed out on P9 and so had to start from the fourth row once again in the afternoon. I made a better start in race 2 but during the first half of the race I struggled to overtake, because we are lacking some traction when exiting the corners, especially when everyone is on fresh tyres and are able to brake hard. After a few laps, when the tyre performance begins to drop, I can be more effective, and in fact our pace at that point was very similar to the top five. Anyway, this was a tough track for us, and I think the upcoming races will be better.”