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Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup heads to Portugal

Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup heads to Portugal

The excitement created by the double header opening weekend in Jerez continues on Saturday in Estoril, Portugal. Race 3 of the 10 that make up this year´s Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup will see everyone else out to revenge Luis Salom´s double victory in Spain.

The excitement created by the double header opening weekend in Jerez continues on Saturday in Estoril, Portugal. Race 3 of the 10 that make up this year´s Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup will see everyone else out to revenge Luis Salom´s double victory in Spain.

The 16 year old had it all his own way at home but is unlikely to repeat those comfortable wins even in Estoril though he was second fastest there in pre-season testing on March 22nd and 23rd. It was Norwegian 16 year old Sturla Fagerhaug who dominated a typically blustery two day test on the Atlantic coast and he only needs to do one thing right to take the fight to the Spaniard, `I have to get my start right. That´s what let me down both times in Jerez.´

Salom is not expecting it to be easy but he is quite confident. `I am not sure that everything can be as perfect as it was at Jerez, racing isn´t like that but I was happy with the test in Estoril last month. I was a bit careful because the conditions were tricky and a lot of guys were crashing but the lap time and position was still OK.´

Also on the favoured list for Portugal is Deane Brown as the Scot, who turned 15 on April 4th, was 3rd fastest in the test and scored two 3rd places in Spain despite making the same bad starts as Fagerhaug.

On lap times Cristian Trabalon should be close behind Brown but he needs to find the consistency that eluded him in Jerez otherwise he may well again lose out to the likes of Nelson Major and Daijiro Hiura the two first time Rookies who were 5th and 6th fastest at the test and more impressive in the opening races in Spain.

Even as newcomers, 15 year old Frenchman Major and 13 year old Japanese Hiura have more road race experience than American JD Beach who scored two superb second places in Jerez to conclude his first 12 months on tarmac. The 16 year old improves with every outing and though a little off the pace at the Estoril test in 8th place behind 13 year old Italian Kevin Calia, Beach should do much better in this weekend´s race.

The dark horse is certainly the home town hero; 13 year old Miguel Oliveira. He races as Wild Card and was extremely quick at the Estoril test even though he missed several sessions after a string of crashes and slipped to 10th as others went quicker in his absence. If the Portuguese teenager can temper his enthusiasm just a little he could be well to the front, cheered on by the crowd.

Missing from the event will be 13 year old Fin Niklas Ajo who sustained a broken left collarbone when he crashed in the second timed session in Jerez.

Cup standings
Luis Salom (ESP) 50 points
JD Beach (USA) 40
Deane Brown (GBR) 32
Nelson Major (FRA) 23
Sturla Fagerhaug (NOR) 22
Daijiro Hiura (JPN) 22
Daniel Ruiz (ESP) 19
Markus Reiterberger (GER) 15
Jakub Kornfeil (CZE) 15
Florian Marino (FRA) 8
Adam Blacklock (GBR) 8
Mathew Scholtz (RSA) 6
Joshua Elliot (IRL) 6
Cristian Trabalon (ESP) 5
Kevin Calia (ITA) 3
Matthew Hoyle (GBR) 2
Daniel Kartheininger (GER) 2
Peter Sebestyen (HUN) 2

Provisional Entry List Estoril
Daniel Kartheininger, #3 GER
Peter Sebestyén, #6 HUN
Deane Brown, #7 GBR
Mathew Scholtz, #20 RSA
Florian Marino, #21 FRA
Daniel Ruiz, #22 ESP
Harry Stafford, #24 GBR
Markus Reiterberger, #28 GER
Dylan Mavin, #30 AUS
Matthew Hoyle, #32 GBR
Sturla Fagerhaug, #33 NOR
Luis Salom, #39 ESP
Miguel Oliveira, #44 POR *
Daijiro Hiura, #46 JPN
Adam Blacklock, #52 GBR
JD Beach, #59 USA
Sasuke Shinozaki, #68 JPN
Nelson Major, #69 FRA
Kevin Calia, #74 ITA
Jakub Kornfeil, #84 CZE
Cristian Trabalon, #92 ESP
Joshua Elliott, #99 IRL

* Guest rider - no championship points

Tags:
MotoGP, 2008, bwin.com GRANDE PREMIO DE PORTUGAL

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