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7 days ago
By Asia Talent Cup

Home hero: Kunii dominates Motegi Race 2

Sunday sees the Japanese rider take a stunning and dominant win as Deniz Öncü takes the points lead

Yuki Kunii bounced back from a crash out of contention in Race 1 at the Twin Ring Motegi to take the win on Sunday, blasting away from the field in the wet and able to cross the line in clear air. Genki Nakajima impressed to take his second podium of the season in P2, with Deniz Öncü of Turkey crossing the line in third – and taking over the points lead in the Championship.

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Idemitsu Asia Talent Cup: Full Race 2 from Motegi

Kunii got the best start off the line and led into Turn 1, the Japanese youngster then not looking back as he built up a gap of five seconds. Race 1 winner Ryusei Yamanaka was an early faller out of contention, with Can Öncü another to go down in the wet conditions. It was Azroy Anuar first chasing down Kunii, but the Malaysian then also crashed out of contention – all big players in the standings, and leaving everything open ahead of the final round at Sepang in two weeks.

Haruki Noguchi was a big winner after his Race 1 crash saw him fall to fourth in the points on Saturday, crossing the line in P4 in Race 2 and back up into second in the standings, behind Deniz Öncü. Behind the Japanese rider, Indonesians Gerry Salim and Lucky Hendriansya completed the top six, with Koki Suzuki in P7 on home turf. Thai rider Kritchaporn Kaewsonthi took eighth ahead of Irfan Ardiansyah, with another Japanese rider completing the top ten – Takuto Suzuki.

Deniz Öncü now leads by 10 points over Noguchi, with Yamanaka only one point further back from his compatriot – and Anuar 21 points off the lead.

Alberto Puig, Talent Promotion Director: “It was a difficult race and we’ve had a crazy quantity of crashes! But these things happen when conditions are difficult and the guys don’t have much experience, but you have to race in the conditions you have. Now Deniz Öncü has an advantage but the Championship is still very open and there are 50 points left to race, so we hope there will be a good challenge and thrilling racing until the end.”

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