While Alvaro Bautista fully backs the government and health authority measures taken to halt the spread of the coronavirus, he says he can only complete half his usual training programme because of restrictions.

Bautista and the rest of the World Superbike paddock have effectively been out of action since the 2020 opening round at Phillip Island following the postponement of the second round in Qatar which was scheduled to take place last weekend.

With the upcoming rounds at Assen, Imola and Aragon across April and May also unlikely to go ahead as planned, the World Superbike grid like the rest of the sporting world is facing an extensive stoppage until the coronavirus situation improves.

With lockdowns currently in place across Spain and Italy, Bautista says he’s unable to train on any kind of bike but has been staying fit in a gym he has installed at his home.

The enforced pause has given the Spanish rider more time with his young daughter who was born shortly before the end of 2019 as well as time to reflect on wider matters.

“Right now, I would say that I can do about half the training I usually do,” Bautista said. “Luckily, I have a small gym at home so I can do something, but I can’t train at a more technical level, meaning riding, whether motocross, supermotard or flat track.

“Let’s say that I can train physically but not technically, in a normal, non-specialist way. But you have to adapt to every situation. Mentally, I’m not focusing on the fact that we can’t ride, or on the uncertainty of when we can return to racing. I try to use the time at home in a positive way, to be with my little girl which is certainly very nice for me.”

Despite his frustrations, Bautista fully backs the ‘stay at home’ message all riders and organisations are sending out to fans to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

“That the most important thing now is human life and therefore: stay at home! Let’s think about others, this is the time to show solidarity,” he said.

“Hopefully, people who are ill will recover and the races will restart soon, proving that the situation is back to normal. A big, virtual, hug to all of you!

“It’s a strange situation, one we've never experienced before. This virus mainly affects people who are older and frail, or who already have other problems. It’s time to think more about others than about ourselves. It's a time for solidarity.

“Let’s hope that the situation will improve as soon as possible and that we never find ourselves in this position again.”

The Dutch World Superbike round at Assen remains provisionally on for April 17-19 but is expected to be postponed while both the upcoming rounds at Imola and Aragon in May are also under threat from being called off.

 

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