Alvaro Bautista wasn't a popular man among the Mugello fans, having clashed with home hero Valentino Rossi on the opening lap of Sunday's Italian MotoGP.
The incident occurred on the exit of turn two. Bautista said he was unaware that Rossi had made a move around the outside, while Rossi suggested the Spaniard may have been trying to defend his position
Either way, the impact sent Bautista to the ground, while Rossi speared off track before also falling and then slamming into a protective tyre barrier. Both riders were able to walk away.
“Unfortunately in turn three I made contact with Valentino and we both crashed out of a race that was very important for both of us,” said Bautista, whose Gresini Honda team is based in Italy. “Valentino and I have watched the incident back together in Race Direction and it was just a racing incident that leaves us both with a bitter taste in the mouth but neither of us is to blame.
“I was on the inside and it is very difficult to see a rider on the outside from there. He was taking a slightly different line and that's why we came together when we changed direction. I didn't see him. I just felt his bike hitting me. It's a shame because I felt good on the bike. These things happen but we have to forget about it and try to think about the next race.”
Race Direction agreed with Bautista and no further action will be taken.