Noguchi spearheads Junior Talent Team in Barcelona qualifying

08 June 2019

Japanese rider 14th on Saturday as Championship leader Kunii and Aji are forced to miss Round 4 with injury

Haruki Noguchi will start Round 4 of the FIM CEV Repsol Moto3™ Junior World Championship from 14th on the grid, putting the Japanese rider in a good position to fight for solid point scoring places at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Sunday.

Qualifying was played out under perfect conditions in Barcelona as the Junior Talent Team riders got plenty of valuable laps under their belts, with all three of the riders racing at Round 4 having their first competitive taste of the Barcelona-based circuit this weekend. Max Cook will be the next Junior Talent Team rider on the grid, the young British star will aim for the points from P21, with reigning Idemitsu Asia Talent Cup Champion Billy Van Eerde taking 27th – both riders will be hungry to make progress from the off.

It was a positive day at the office for all three riders as they made their debuts at this circuit, but there were two notable absentees from the Junior Talent Team ranks. Championship leader Yuki Kunii, who had picked up two wins and a second in his last three FIM CEV Repsol Moto3™ Junior World Championship outings, suffered a broken right wrist while on Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup duty at Mugello last weekend. This means Kunii is forced to sit out Round 4, with his lead at the top of the standings 13 points ahead of race day in Barcelona.

Meanwhile, ‘super’ Mario Aji will also be out of action after injuring his left wrist on Thursday at the Circuit de Barcelona. A big blow for the Indonesian rider who will be doing all he can to get back to full fitness as quick as possible.

So, there will be two races for Noguchi, Cook and Van Eerde to tackle on Sunday. Race 1 begins at 11:00 local time (GMT +2), with the three riders heading back out for Race 2 at 14:00.

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