Top five positions and great points hauls for the Asia Talent Team after a solid weekend of progress
Round four of the 2017 FIM CEV Repsol Moto3™ Junior World Championship saw the Asia Talent Team take more fantastic finishes, with Yuki Kunii taking the team’s top finish in Race 2 in fourth, following up a top five for Kazuki Masaki in Race 1.
The first race of the day saw all three Asia Talent Team riders come home well inside the top ten, with a solid start for front row starters Masaki and Andi Farid, and Kunii soon making progress from down in P14 on the grid. Just behind the fight for the podium, Masaki came out top in the fight for fifth – a few tenths clear over the line of the chasing Jaume Masia. Just over a tenth behind Masia, the fight for seventh was an all-Asia Talent Team affair, with Andi Farid and Yuki Kunii locked in battle and separated by only 0.048 across the line in favour of the Indonesian. With all the riders crossing the line in the top ten, the stage was set for another fantastic race later in the day.
Race 2 was a similarly clean start off the front row, and was another trio of points finishes for the Asia Talent Team. Yuki Kunii reversed the finishing order for the three, storming up ten places from his grid position to take P4 and stay clear of Aaron Polanco over the line after some faultless final laps. Masaki took another solid finish in sixth and a comfortable margin ahead of the rider chasing him, Sergio Garcia, whilst Andi Farid showed great pace without to get in the fight before lowsiding out of contention with a handful of laps to go. Nevertheless, the Indonesian took home points as he quickly re-mounted – crossing the line in P14 after a weekend of great pace as he comes back to full strength from injury.
Masaki is the top Asia Talent Team rider in the Championship as the calendar reaches the halfway point, with the Japanese rider sitting in seventh on 47 points – just ahead of compatriot and fellow Asia Talent Team rider Yuki Kunii in P8 with 41. Andi Farid is now P14 in the Championship as he comes back from injury, with Valencia adding some good points as he regains his early season traction.
Next up is legendary Estoril in Portugal as the FIM CEV Repsol heads towards Lisbon from the 21st to 23rd July, with one race for the Moto3™ field in round five.
Alberto Puig, Asia Talent Team Director: “Not so bad. It can always be better, but in Qualifying in second and third it was good for Kazuki and Andi, but Kunii had a problem but was not so bad. In the race they were in the leading group, but the Italian was very fast. It was difficult to be on top; but they were managing the group well. In the second race it was not so close but they were also doing well. Kunii had a disadvantage because he had to come from behind on the grid, but over the last laps he was really quick. He made a big step, and we are quite happy with all of them.”