Portuguese GP: Alice Team preview

ELIAS WANTS TO WIN AGAIN AT ESTORIL AFTER HIS 2006 VICTORY. GUINTOLI IN PORTUGAL FOR THE SECOND TIME . Great anticipation for the third round of the MotoGP World Championship at the Estoril circuit in Portugal. Situated just a few kilometers...

ELIAS WANTS TO WIN AGAIN AT ESTORIL AFTER HIS 2006 VICTORY. GUINTOLI IN PORTUGAL FOR THE SECOND TIME .

Great anticipation for the third round of the MotoGP World Championship at the Estoril circuit in Portugal. Situated just a few kilometers from the portuguese capital, Lisbon, and not too far from the Atlantic coast, the circuit is characterized not only by a long straight and wide turns, but also from the varying weather conditions. In fact, also for this weekend of racing, the weather forecast seems to foresee rain until Friday morning, sunshine for the qualifying day and, again, some stormy clouds for Sunday. The circuit, today called Fernando Pires da Silva, was built in 1972 and has been part of the MotoGP World Championship since 2000.

The Alice Team is looking for redemption after the first, not too exciting, two rounds in Qatar and in Jerez de la Frontera. The Portuguese circuit hasn’t brought much luck to the Italian-Hispanic Team last year, as both riders on the Ducati GP7 Sat couldn’t finish the Grand Prix. Instead, Spanish rider Toni Elias, has great memories related to this track. In 2006 he managed to finish in front of everyone Valentino Rossi after an exciting battle in the last turns with a gap of two thounsandths of a second. Second appearance for the other rider of the Alice Team, Sylvain Guintoli, who, after becoming a father for the second time last Friday, can completely focus on improving his Ducati Desmosedici GP8 Sat with Bridgestone tyres. At his first appearance in the premier class on the Estoril circuit, the french rider concluded the race in fourteenth position.

Alice Team Principal, Luis d’Antin, is ready and determined more than ever to improve the firsts results of the season: “The season hasn’t begun in the best of ways for us. Sincerely I expected much more, but we know we are a young Team and both riders, at their first experience on a Ducati Desmosedici GP8 Sat, still need some time to learn the secrects of this bike in the best way possibile. No-one can doubt the techincal potential we have at our disposal. Ducati is the World Champion, therefore we can’t ask for more. Bridgestone, also World Champion, has now reached excellent levels and they always support us in the best way possible in improving our performances. Toni (Elias) on this track has conveyed incredible emotions to all motorcycle fans with his great 2006 victory. Who knows, maybe he will make us feel the same emotions again.”

The word “Estoril”, in fact, stirs up particular sensations for Toni Elias. As soon as you say it, his eyes begins to shimmer: “Yes, it’s true, I will surely never forget that day. My first, amazing, MotoGP victory. But unluckily in this world, as in the entire world of sports, you have to forget the past quickly. The most important challenge, is the next one! I want to improve and together with my Team we must find the right way in the shortest time possible. I really like this circuit also because it suits to my characterstics thanks to the great braking points. We hope that thanks to the data achieved during the Jerez test we will be able to prepare the bike at best.”

In the other half of the garage Sylvain Guintoli, who became a father for the second time of his daughter, Layla, is ready more than ever for this third world appointment: “I feel such a strong adrenalin rush! I am really happy I was present at the birth of my second baby girl. I really wanted to be there. But now I have to concentrate on Sunday’s race. This, in my opinion, is a very nice and difficult circuit. We will have to work a lot on Friday and Saturday to prepare the bike at the best. Last year didn’t go too well for me and I hope I will be able to do much better this time and to gain as many points possible for the me and for the Alice Team.”

-credit: pd'a

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Valentino Rossi , Toni Elias , Sylvain Guintoli