The TT Circuit Assen hosted two more classic races before the summer break and the Northern Talent Cup is revved up to race again as competition resumes. The paddock heads for the Red Bull Ring to join MotoGP™ at the Styrian GP, making the first of two visits to the classic Austrian venue in 2021. The grid will also be joined by the Austrian Junior Cup grid; a first for the NTC and a whole extra challenge.
Heading in, Jakub Gurecky (JRT Brno Circuit) has a whopping 39-point lead after a full house of podiums so far, including that incredible winning run of four in a row earlier in the year. But last time out showed he can be defeated, with two third places as Lorenz Luciano (Junior Black Knights Team) and then rookie Rossi Moor (FAIRIUM Next Generation Riders Team) took to the top step. Now they’ll be keen to make up more ground, and with three rounds remaining and 150 points on the table it’s far from decided who will be taking the Cup this season.
Gurecky, Luciano and Moor must make up the favourites for Red Bull Ring victories as the winners so far and the top three in the standings, but there are a good few riders who’ve also taken to the rostrum this season to keep an eye on. Jonas Kocourek (JRT Brno Circuit) has three podiums but will want to move forward in the dry, and Stepan Zuda (Motoracing23 Klub V ACR) will want to build on his good form at Assen after taking an impressive second to kickstart some momentum. Jacopo Hosciuc (Hos Racing Team) will want to put his bad luck to bed, and Lennoxx Phommara (Phommara Team) will be looking to breach the gap to the podium fight again and get back on the rostrum. Kas Beekmans (Team KNMV), meanwhile, has been just on the edge of that top three a few times and will aiming to seal the deal.
One rider who has been a podium finisher already after taking his first at Assen is Niklas Kitzbichler (Racing-Team-Kitzbichler), and he’s racing on home turf. Also a competitor in the Austrian Junior Cup, he’ll be looking to use that home advantage to keep impressing with his progress in 2021. Phil Urlass (PrüstelGP Junior Team) and Julius Coenen (Helena und Julius Racing Team) are also AJC competitors and will want to convert that experience, and although it’s not quite home turf for the Germans on the grid, it is familiar.
What can those with AJC experience on the NTC grid, and the AJC competitors joining it this weekend, do once the lights go out? Will Gurecky be first out the blocks to re-start his incredible winning run? Or can the likes of Luciano and Moor keep reeling him in? Find out at 17:30 (GMT +2) on Saturday the 7th of August as the lights go out for Race 1, before Race 2 on Sunday at 16:30.
Entry List updates:
Tibor Varga (Forty Racing Team) will miss this round due to injury.
Valentino Herrlich (Busch und Wagner Racing Team) has withdrawn from the 2021 Northern Talent Cup due to an injury incurred in training.
Everyone at the NTC wishes both a speedy recovery!
Swiss rider Maxime Schmid (Team Schmid) joins the 2021 NTC in place of Bryan-Kim Dupasquier.