A tighter battle at the Red Bull Ring
Predictably unpredictable the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup battled and splashed its way through the Brno weekend. It is a short trip into Austria for another pair of epic contests at the home race for the KTM RC 250 Rs.
By sliding off in Race 2 in Brno, Can Öncü gave his opposition some encouragement, it was his first error and while he scored 25 points from his superb Race 1 victory the 14-year-old Turk only inched away at the head of the table.
Points boost important
Aleix Viu, the 16-year-old Spaniard collected 22 to add to his second place and 16-year-old Japanese Kazuki Masaki grabbed 19. Those chasing the lead trio actually closed in, twin bother Deniz Öncü jumped to fourth with 32, 17-year-old German Matthias Meggle grabbed 33, propelling him to fifth.
Biggest loser was Italian 15-year-old Omar Bonoli who slipped from fourth to eighth as he could not ride because of an injury he suffered in his foot during qualifying. He was also passed by 15-year-old Japanese Ryusei Yamanaka who scored 27 and Kevin Orgis, the 17-year-old German who was happy with his haul of 30.
Confidence boost just as valuable
So the top seven is now closer and while Orgis in seventh is 62 behind Can Öncü there are still five races to go and that means 125 points. Now that Can has shown himself to be occasionally fallible the others have hope.
The Öncü twins have tested at the Red Bull Ring, they will be on the pace early, fellow first year Rookie Masaki has not seen the track but that hasn’t worried him so far this year. So he will be a threat and the Czech weekend has boosted the confidence of both Germans as well as Yamanaka who took a big step forward.
The weather, who knows, but the circuit is sweeping and smooth, the Rookies all have to watch out for track limit violations which cost Viu his Race 1 win last year. It will be another fascinating event.
This weekend’s Rookies Cup races can be seen live on www.redbull.tv and on TV stations around the world.
Race 1 is at 16.30 CET on Saturday and Race 2 is on Sunday at 15.30, the show starts 10 minutes before the race.