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3 days ago
By Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup

Second race in China brings victory for Kunii

First podium of the season for Japanese youngster Yuki Kunii

Yuki Kunii took the first win of his rookie season in the 2016 Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup, crossing the finish line in Race 2 at Zhuhai Circuit in first place, ahead of second placed Gerry Salim and third placed Ai Ogura.

Salim started on pole and it was him and Kunii who got away best to content the lead of the race, with the pair of them pulling away to do battle alone at the front from lap 6 onwards. Kunii ultimately had too much and finally secured the win to take maximum points for the first win in the Cup for the Japanese rider.

Behind Kunii and Salim there was a great five-rider battle for the podium between Ogura, Kazuki Masaki, Andi Izdihar, Ryusei Yamanaka and Deniz Oncu, in which Ogura would ultimately prevail. Masaki and Yamanaka completed the top five with a personal best performance of the season so far from Oncu seeing him finish in sixth.

It was not the best day for Championship leader Somkiat Chantra, who was unable to follow front group and finished the race in eighth place.

Reviewing the second race of the weekend in China, Alberto Puig, Director of the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup, commented, “Well, it was a very interesting race and it was six or seven seconds faster than yesterday. Kunii was really impressive, he was very strong and pushing all through the race. Today we are happier because the front group was bigger than yesterday so we are very satisfied with the performance in Zuhai. The championship is getting tight so the final rounds will be incredible.”

With two rounds to go, the results from the visit to the Zhuhai International Circuit mean that standings frontrunner Chantra (130 points) now leads by eight points from second placed Izidhar (122 points). Salim (120 points), Ogura (119 points) and Yamanaka (111 points) complete the current top five, with everything to play for in the upcoming rounds.

There are four races remaining in the 2016 Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup, to be held at Twin Ring Motegi (Japan) over the 14th-16th October weekend and at the Sepang International Circuit (Malaysia) over the 28th-30th October weekend.

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