FIRST VICTORY TO ENEA BASTIANINI IN RED BULL MOTOGP ROOKIES CUP
Young Italian rider Enea Bastianini rounded off a top Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup weekend in Jerez, Spain on Sunday when he out-foxed Karel Hanika and Stefano Manzi to win the second of two races in this launching pad competition for junior racers.
Bastianini, in his debut year with the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup took third on Saturday, but gaining in confidence, vaulted himself up the order on Sunday in just his fourth race in the series.
“I felt I was fast and felt I could win the race,” he said. “Yesterday I was a bit uncomfortable on the brakes and I was third. But actually we didn't change anything on the bike for today, I just me and managed to win. It was a great race with Hanika, I just pushed to the maximum at the end, no plan, I just gave it full gas.”
Points leader Hanika of the Czech Republic was not so happy, having been pipped on the finish line for the second day in a row, even though he has one win and three seconds in the four races. “I'm not happy to finish second again of course. It was another tough race, I pushed as hard as I could. Right from the start of the race I felt comfortable on the bike, it was working well so I was enjoying riding it and happy to be leading,” Hanika said. “At the end I just tried to put in the perfect laps and hoped that was enough to win. Enea passed me and then I just got a sort of mental block that told me not to do anything silly at the last corner and that the points were more important. Of course that's true and it is important for the championship but it's not as much fun as winning.”
Manzi, the 14-year-old Italian looked very confident going into the final stages of what was a very tight race at the front and was pleased with his third place. “It was such a tough race, they always are in Rookies Cup. Yesterday I got stuck in the pack and just couldn't break out but I knew I could not let that happen today. I pushed so hard and at the end I really had a go at winning, I went past Hanika but then went wide and he got back in front, then I was just a bit too far back.”
The lead trio had been handed a real advantage when a 10-rider battle for the lead was broken when Darryn Binder went out with technical problems in lap 12 of 16. He too had looked like a potential winner until the problem finished his bid but is also having a great start to his debut season.
Australian rider Olly Simpson, who crashed at the beginning of Saturday’s race was reported to have a straightforward break to the radius bone in his left forearm. His dislocated right shoulder was repositioned at the track. He has a small crack in his right foot but is reported to be on the road to recovery.
The FIM stewards determined that Lukas Trautmann, the 17-year-old Austrian, should miss three races for his part in the accident. The first race was counted as Sunday’s race in Jerez and he will not be allowed to start in Assen where the competition resumes at the end of June at the Dutch TT after a seven-week break.
Results Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, Race 2 Jerez
Note: All riders on KTM RC250 RB bikes
1. Enea Bastianini (I), 29:55.087 min
2. Karek Haneki (CZ), 29:55.228
3. Stefano Manzi (I), 29:55.636
4. Jorge Martin (E), 29:58.534
5. Toprak Razgatlioglu (TR), 29:59.215
Standings Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup afer 4 of 14 rounds
1. Hanika, 85 points
2. Martin, 57
3. Bradley Ray (UK), 56
4. Razgatlioglu 53
5. Bastianini, 49