Alvaro Bautista returns from Ducati testing

It was announced in August that Bautista would reunite with Ducati, where he made his WSBK debut, for 2022, ending a two-year relationship with Honda.

After the final round of the season last weekend in Indonesia, Bautista was back in action on Wednesday for his first glimpse of the V4 R Panigale since the end of the 2019 season in Qatar.

The two-day testing continues Thursday, with Bautista being joined on the track by Ducati World Supersport signing Nicolo Bulega aboard the Italian brand’s all-new V2 Panigale.

Bautista took the WSBK scene by storm in 2019 when he first left MotoGP, winning the first 11 races of the season before Kawasaki’s Jonathan Rea gradually turned the tide of the championship.

The Spaniard finished far second in the standings that year with 16 wins to his name before a grueling two-year stint at Honda that resulted in just three visits to the podium and a better place in the championship ninth in 2020.

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Bautista concluded his tenure with the Japanese brand with a 10th place finish in the second race at the brand new Mandalika venue last weekend, leaving him in the same position in the standings.

Honda will lead a rookie squad made up of Spanish rookies Iker Lecuona and Xavi Vierge in 2022.

Redding ready for first BMW test in December

The rider that Bautista replaces at Ducati for 2022, Scott Redding, hopes to make his first experience with the BMW M1000RR which he will drive next year next month.

BMW team boss Shaun Muir suggested talking to Eurosport that the test would take place in Estoril, with another test following in Jerez which would also involve BMW drivers from Bonovo Loris Baz and Eugene Laverty.

“It’s important for me to put on the Ducati leathers, put on the new suit and go and test the new bike,” said Redding in Indonesia. “I want to understand. I don’t want to go into the off-season thinking, ‘okay, what’s that up?’

“I want to have a few days of driving that are easy to understand, then push a few days and see what we need to improve, but at least feel like I’m going out and training with good focus.”

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