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Points For Montella As Öncü Finds Misfortune
Kawasaki Puccetti Racing rider Can Öncü was unlucky to fall from a strong position in the first WorldSSP race of the weekend at Assen. Yari Montella, his team-mate, was 12th in a race which was red flagged and declared complete after 13 of the scheduled 18-laps.
Having qualified in second position for the first WorldSSP race of the Assen round Öncü was in competitive mood from the start, running in second position after one lap.
He was dropped to fifth, then climbed back to fourth, before falling on lap five. He was unable to restart and finally no-scored, but has one more race at Assen to make his mark on the podium.
Montella and his fellow 2022 Kawasaki rookie rider, Adrian Huertas (MTM Kawasaki) had a battle toward the end of the race, with Huertas finishing 11th and just one place ahead of Montella. An unlucky Superpole qualifying session saw Montella start only 17th on the grid.
Both Adrian and Yari scored valuable points in Race One, with more on offer on Sunday 24 April, when Race Two gets underway.
In the very early championship standings Öncü is now 12th, Huertas is 11th and Montella is 14th.
The second Assen WorldSSP race is scheduled to start at 12:30PM on Sunday.
Can Öncü, stated: “I was very fast in Superpole and scored a front row start. I also made a good start to the race and was fighting in the front group when I unexpectedly lost traction at the front and crashed. I was unable to continue, unfortunately. I’m really sorry because today we had the potential to score an excellent result, but we were unlucky. Thanks to my technicians for all their hard work.”
Yari Montella, stated: “Today definitely wasn’t our lucky day. First I crashed in Superpole and then I was unable to make a clean lap that would allow me to improve. In the race, I made a good start and got into a strong rhythm that allowed me to move up. But my progress was stopped by the red flag, without which I could have scored a better result. The positive thing is that we’ve understood where to work to improve and so we’ll try to make up for today in tomorrow’s race.”
Huertas’ 11th place in the race today makes him the best Kawasaki rider in the championship so far, in 11th position overall. Jeffrey Buis (Motozoo Racing by Puccetti Kawasaki) was 18th in the opening race at his home round. Eugene McManus (Motozoo Racing by Puccetti Kawasaki) was 21st in Race Two.
Tom Booth-Amos (Prodina Racing Kawasaki) no scored after he was involved in the crash that brought out the red flags that ended the race a few laps early.