Alvaro Bautista was delighted to be back in action in practice for the Portuguese MotoGP event following his leg injury. The Suzuki rider had broken his left leg in the first race of the season in Qatar, but returned to action just over a month later in today's session.
Although he finished at the bottom of the times in both sessions, Bautista was elated to be able to ride again. He admitted, however, that he was still not fully fit.
"I am very happy because I think that nobody expected that after little more than one month I would be able to jump on the bike and ride," said Bautista. "When I broke my femur my target was to ride here and I worked very hard to make it happen.
"I am still not 100 percent, because I need some more power in my leg, but to be able to ride and get a feeling for the bike and the reference points around the track in my mind to be a MotoGP rider, I am certainly fit enough. I went one second faster this afternoon than I did this morning and my feeling on the bike was very similar – I was just a bit more confident, so I could push more.
"I didn't want to risk anything today, it was all about riding and getting a feeling – I didn't want to push too hard to find that fast lap time. I am improving every time I get on the bike so that makes things look good for the rest of the weekend.
"My leg is a bit stiff now so I will need to recover and get a bit of work on it this evening, but it recovered quickly after this morning's session, so I don't think that will be a problem. I think my body is also remembering how to ride a MotoGP bike as well as my mind is, so that is a very positive thing."