Alvaro Bautista has confirmed he will be back in the saddle for the fourth round of the MotoGP World Championship having been forced to skip the French Grand Prix through injury.
The Spaniard had hoped to race at Le Mans, just a week after undergoing surgery on his shoulder, but took the decision to withdraw when it was evident he could not maintain a competitive pace.
Nonetheless, having had another two weeks to recover, Bautista is raring to go for Mugello, the Rizla Suzuki rider declaring himself as 95 per cent fit.
“I am feeling a little bit better and I am getting stronger every day. I still have some bruising around my ribs, but that is starting to ease now. I am training to get myself up to fitness in time for Mugello, I think I am about 95% now, but it is that extra 5% that will be the hard bit, so I know I've still got a bit of work to do.
“Mugello is a great track and I have had some good results there and we need to start getting some points, I've only finished one MotoGP race and feel like I haven't really got going yet, so let's look to Mugello as the start of better things to come.”
Bautista's withdrawal compounded a dismal weekend for the factory Suzuki team in France, with Loris Capirossi going on to fall for the second race in succession. It is a trend the veteran is desperate to stop on home soil.
“I am still very disappointed and angry about what happened at Le Mans and Jerez, but that is in the past now and we can't change that, but we can change what will happen in the future and we'll certainly be trying to do that.
“Mugello is a good place to start a strong comeback and I'll be trying as hard as I can to get the season off the ground. It is a track I love and I know I can go well there. I have a lot of fans and friends who will all be at the track and I will be giving it everything to give them a good result.
“Most of all we need a good result for the guys in the crew, they have done a great job this year and the bike is much better than 2009, we now need to start getting the results to show that!”