Salom defends Moto3 lead as Sissis returns home16/10/2013
Red Bull KTM Ajo rider heads to Phillip Island with 14 point advantage in Moto3 standings. Arthur Sissis will try to repeat his podium from last year, nurse whilst Zulfahmi Khairuddin comes back from injury.
The Moto3 World Championship continues at pace and travels to Phillip Island, doctor Australia, this weekend for the second of three consecutive races. Luis Salom wants to continue adding to his podium tally after a seventh victory of the season last weekend in Sepang. Arthur Sissis will ride in front of his home fans a year after achieving his first podium at the Australian track, whilst the ever-improving condition of Zulfahmi Khairuddin will hopefully allow him to compete at each of the remaining rounds.
Victory taken on the last corner of the Malaysian Grand Prix has put Luis Salom at the head of the overall standings and 14 points clear of second-placed Alex Rins. At Phillip Island, the Red Bull KTM Ajo rider achieved his second GP podium in 2011. Last year a ride-through penalty left him out of the running for a repeat of that. Salom has taken a total of 7 wins and 4 further rostrums from the fourteen races held so far in 2013.
He tried until the very last moment, but in the end Zulfahmi Khairuddin was unable to ride at his home race last weekend through injury. His recently operated right wrist had had enough before the race, and would not allow him to participate at his favourite GP. However, the Malaysian rider has not given up and has worked hard to make sure that he can get on his KTM and contest the Australian GP. Phillip Island is a track that has been tough for Zulfahmi Khairuddin, who did not complete last year’s contest, but the prospect of a good result is an added incentive.
One rider who will be racing at home is Arthur Sissis. The Australian comes into the Grand Prix off the back of an unfortunate crash and a nineteenth place at Sepang, but there is no better place for him to bounce back. As a rookie last season, Sissis took his first Moto3 podium in his first season, claiming third place. He intends to repeat the showing this weekend.
Circuit information – Phillip Island
Length: 4.448 m / 2.764 miles
Width: 13 metres
Left corners: 7
Right corners: 5
Longest straight: 900 m / 0.559 miles
“As has become habitual throughout this season, the Australian GP will be a tough event. We have to keep on in the same way as at Sepang. We need to be just as strong, very focused and continue working very hard, because we still have three races to go and each will be very important. Both the team and I will need to give 100%, as we have done up until now. We shouldn’t be thinking about the championship, because now we need to focus on the race at Phillip Island. The important thing is that in this final stretch of the season we need to get the best result possible at each circuit.”
“I’ve been waiting all year for this weekend. It’s my home Grand Prix and Phillip Island is my favourite circuit. I will have my family, friends and supporters there –which makes it a very special event for me. Last year was incredible, as I took a podium that I wasn’t expecting and that I will never forget. This year I hope to be fast again from Day 1 and, although it will be difficult, repeat the results from last season.”
“Phillip Island is one of the tracks that I like the most on the MotoGP calendar. Last year I had some good practice sessions and was fifth on the timesheets, then in the race I was going well until I DNFed. The asphalt has been re-laid, so we shall see what the grip is like. I feel better after every physiotherapy session and I can feel the pain is lessening, so I hope things continue developing positively and that I am as fit as possible to start the weekend well on Friday.”