Bautista: I’ll never forget perfect World Superbike debut

Alvaro Bautista hails his historic achievement of a World Superbike hat-trick on his debut as a perfect weekend
Bautista: I’ll never forget perfect World Superbike debut

Alvaro Bautista has hailed his historic achievement of a World Superbike hat-trick of wins on his debut as “a perfect weekend” that he says would have been unbelievable before this weekend.

The Racing Ducati rider produced a flawless debut on the new V4 R storming to dominant victories in both races plus a hard-fought win battling against reigning world champion Jonathan Rea in the new sprint race on Sunday morning.

As a result, Bautista becomes the first rider to win three races on one weekend in World Superbike history, while the Spaniard is also just the second rider to take a clean sweep of wins on debut (John Kocinski achieved a double victory on debut at Misano in 1996).

Following his history-making performances, Bautista concedes he never thought a treble of wins at his first World Superbike round was possible and has lauded his Racing Ducati squad for providing him with the dominating package of the V4 R.



“It has been a perfect weekend and my Superbike debut couldn’t have been better!” Bautista said. “We made a clean sweep of everything by winning race 1, the Superpole race and race 2.

“If people had said to me before that I would have won three races, I wouldn’t have believed them, but we worked hard during the tests to prepare a fantastic bike.

“In this morning’s Superpole race I had a lot of fun fighting with Rea, I knew that he was very strong and that he was always pushing. The pace was incredible and I had to concentrate so hard, but in the end I got the better of him.

“In race 2 the track conditions were more difficult than in the morning, and it was important to save the tyres because of the higher track temperature, so I pushed hard in the early laps to try and manage the situation at the end.

“I’m so happy with the results, today is a day I will never forget! A big thanks to the Aruba team, to Ducati and to my crew for making this all possible.”

Bautista, who also completely outperformed the rest of the Ducati V4 R riders with team-mate Chaz Davies down in seventh place in race two, has reminded his factory Ducati squad the results will count for little if he cannot maintain his momentum at different circuits.

12 months ago Marco Melandri stormed to a double victory at Phillip Island for Ducati but failed to win a race for the remainder of 2018.

“Now we have to continue to work hard,” he said. “We’re only at the beginning and I think it’s going to be a very top-level championship.”