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Predictably unpredictable, the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup battled and splashed its way through the Brno GP weekend, and it will be a short trip across the border and into Austria for another two epic contests at the home race for the KTM RC 250Rs.
By sliding off in Race 2, Can Öncü gave his opposition in Brno some encouragement. It was his first error, and while he scored 25 points from a superb Race 1 victory, the 14-year-old Turk only inched away from the rest of the table.
Points boost important
Aleix Viu, the 16-year-old Spaniard, collected 22 points at the weekend to add to his second place in the Championship standings, and 16-year-old Japanese Kazuki Masaki grabbed 19. Those chasing the leading trio were able to close in as well though, with Deniz Öncü jumping to fourth with 32 points, and 17-year-old German Matthias Meggle earning 33, which propeled him to fifth.
Biggest loser was 15-year-old Omar Bonoli, who slipped from fourth to eighth when the Italian couldn’t ride because of an injury he suffered to his foot during qualifying. He was also passed by 15-year-old Japanese Ryusei Yamanaka who scored 27 points, and Kevin Orgis, the 17-year-old German who was happy with his haul of 30.
Confidence boost just as valuable
The top seven is now closer – and while Orgis in seventh is 62 behind Can Öncü there are still five races to go and that means 125 points. Now that Can has shown himself to be occasionally fallible the others have hope.
The Öncü twins have tested at the Red Bull Ring, and they will be on the pace early. Fellow first year Rookie Masaki has not seen the track but that hasn’t worried him so far this year, which means he will be a threat – and the Czech weekend has boosted the confidence of both Germans, as well as Yamanaka, who took a big step forward.
The weather will be unknowable, but the circuit is sweeping and smooth – the Rookies all have to watch out for track limit violations which cost Viu his Race 1 win last year. It will be another fascinating event.