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Rizla_SuzukiThere is a lot of pressure resting on the shoulders of Alvaro Bautista. Bautista will be the sole rider for the Rizla Suzuki team during the 2011 MotoGP season, but he believes that the situation will work to his advantage.

“I think being the only rider is positive on the whole,” Bautista said. “Because Suzuki is working only for me and they are making the bike to my requests. Now it’s very hard for me but I think that when the races start it will be easier and I think I’ll have more support.”

Bautista was only able to ride on two of the three days during the Sepant test due to illness, but Bautista was happy with the work that the Rizla Suzuki team was able to accomplish.

“I’m very happy because I’ve improved my best lap time from last year, so it’s a good sign for us,” said Bautista.

Bautista is happy to be the sole rider for Rizla Suzuki, but he should also be relieved that team manager Paul Denning has decided to bring a back up rider to the Qatar test. John Hopkins will be joining the Suzuki team in Qatar in March, and will be Bautista’s backup during the entire 2011 MotoGP season.

“With only one rider we’ve got to think carefully about a back-up plan, in case something goes wrong,” Denning said. “We’re obviously very much hoping that we don’t have to call on it at any point, because we’re putting everything behind Álvaro and that’s the priority. But we have an obligation to Suzuki, to Rizla and to all the team’s partners to be at all the races so we do need to have a plan.”

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com

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