Two teammates are battling it out for the 2020 Riders’ Championship with everything on the line at a new circuit for WorldSSP300.
While the 2020 FIM Supersport 300 World Championship Manufacturers’ title has already been decided – in favour of Kawasaki – two teammates head into the season-ending Pirelli Estoril Round in battle as they duel it out for the 2020 Riders’ Championship with everything to be decided at the Circuito Estoril. All season, it’s been between Jeffrey Buis (MTM Kawasaki MOTOPORT) and his fellow countryman and teammate Scott Deroue and with it all resting on one final fight, the title could go either away.
Jeffrey Buis (MTM Kawasaki MOTOPORT) heads into the finale as the points leader and is ahead of teammate Scott Deroue by 28 points with 50 available. Buis can wrap up the Championship in Race 1 and the simplest way for him to do this is finish ahead of Deroue; however, he can afford to lose three points to Deroue in Race 1. If Buis is 25 points clear of Deroue heading into Race 2 he will be Champion as Deroue will be unable to match Buis’ win tally for 2020, even if he wins both races at Estoril. It’s a new track, just like Catalunya, where Buis was also in formidable form.
For Deroue, he’ll need to outscore Buis by four points to take the title battle into Race 2. Should he win Race 1, he will gain a minimum of five points over his teammate meaning the duel will go down to the wire. Deroue has one win so far this season and will be looking to add to that in order to become World Champion; both himself and Buis fighting to become the first Dutch WorldSSP300 Champion. Deroue has some experience at the Circuito Estoril having raced there in 2011 and 2012; taking two wins in 2012 in the Red Bull Rookies Cup.
Turkish star Bahattin Sofuoglu (Biblion Motoxracing Yamaha WorldSSP300) sits 48 points behind Deroue and, while he has a very long shot at taking second place, will be looking to ensure he stays third in the Championship, especially now he can’t win it. He’s currently 29 points clear of Unai Orradre (Yamaha MS Racing) and will be hoping he can finish ahead of the Spanish rider in the standings.
The battle for fourth in the Championship is also a tight affair with three riders separated by just four points. Orradre lies fourth at the moment with Ana Carrasco (Kawasaki Provec WorldSSP300) fifth, although she will not be racing at Estoril after she was injured in a testing crash at the track, and Tom Booth-Amos (RT Motorsports by SKM-Kawasaki) in sixth. All three have claimed race victories throughout 2020 but, with Carrasco not present, Booth-Amos and Orradre will be looking to secure fourth in the standings.
Booth-Amos crashed out of the lead of Race 1 at Magny-Cours and will be looking to bounce back from that disappointed with a strong performance at Estoril, while Orradre had to fight through the Last Chance Race; making it onto the main grid despite finishing seventh in the Last Chance Race. He will be hoping to avoid the additional race and progress straight to Superpole and the main races. Booth-Amos comes into the round confident and settled, with his 2021 ride already in the bag.
Magny-Cours race winner Marc Garcia (2R Racing) has shown impressive pace since returning to the Championship, having claimed two podiums in his four races so far in 2020. The 2017 World Champion will hope to add to that tally as the season comes to an end. There will be two wildcard entries on the grid with Tomas Alonso and Miguel Santiago Duarte joining the Championship; Alonso making his second appearance of the season. There are also two One Event riders with Luca de Vleeschauwer (RT Motorsports by SKM – Kawasaki) and Petr Svoboda (WRP Wepol Racing) lining up at Estoril.
Championship Standings after Race 2, Round 7
1. Jeffrey Buis (NED) Kawasaki (203 points)
2. Scott Deroue (NED) Kawasaki (175 points)
3. Bahattin Sofuoglu (TUR) Yamaha (127 points)
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