ALVARO Bautista will replace the injured Jorge Lorenzo in the Ducati factory team at this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island as he prepares to bid farewell to MotoGP.
The Spaniard is set for a move to WorldSBK in 2019 with Ducati and called it a “dream come true” to work in their factory team.
Lorenzo missed the Japanese Grand Prix last weekend having fractured his wrist in a heavy crash in Thailand but hopes to have healed in time for the Malaysian GP weekend on November 2-4.
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Wounded Lorenzo flies off bike during practice0:00
MotoGP: Nursing an injured ankle from a crash in Aragon, Jorge Lorenzo couldn’t afford to crash during practice in Thailand. This 150km/h bone cruncher followed.
Bautista has been rewarded for his career-best finish of fifth at in Japan, where he was the first Ducati rider across the line on his Angel Nieto-prepared Desmosedici GP17.
The 33-year-old’s temporary draft opens the door for Australian Mike Jones, who could fill in for him at Angel Nieto for what would be only his third MotoGP race, having previously rode for Avintia Racing at Phillip Island and Sepang in 2016.
Alvaro Bautista has been granted permission to ride for Ducati at Phillip Island.Source:AFP
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“It’s like a dream come true to work in the Ducati factory team,” Bautista said.
“First I wanted to say thank you to Jorge Martinez Aspar and the Angel Nieto Team because they’ve let me race with the Ducati factory team, and also to Ducati to give me this opportunity to work with them during the Australian GP.
“I’m so excited to ride with them and the weekend will be to learn and to enjoy, without pressure or a result in my mind – just enjoy the work with the factory.”
Originally published as Ducati announce Lorenzo’s replacement for Phillip Island
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