Barry Baltus opens 2017 season with a podium


Ajo Motorsport Academy take first PreMoto3 podium of the RFME Spanish Championship, thanks to a third position obtained by Barry Baltus in Valencia. Adrian Fernandez finishes seventh and Lorenzo Fellon suffers a mechanical problem but completes the race.

The Ricardo Tormo Circuit -Valencia- hosted the opening round of the PreMoto3 RFME Spanish Championship season this Sunday. The Ajo Motorsport Academy are participating in the series for the second year, with three young talents: Barry Baltus -in his second year with the team- and debutants Adrian Fernandez and Lorenzo Fellon. In the first race of 2017, Baltus placed on the podium, with a hard-fought third position. Fernandez achieved a meritorious seventh place, while Fellon suffered a mechanical problem that forced him to return to the pits to fix the issue.

Barry Baltus started the 2017 season from where he left off at the end of 2016: On the podium. Starting from the third row, the Belgian battled on each of the 14 laps to place amongst the top three. Delighted with the setup of his BeOn bike, Baltus rode much of the race in fifth position, later taking advantage of crashes for two other riders to cross the line third -just 4 seconds behind the racewinner.

Adrian Fernandez shone on Saturday, with the fifth fastest time in qualifying for his debut in the class. The current Spanish champion in the Challenge 80 series also had a great performance on race day, recovering from dropping four positions in the opening laps. From that moment on, the Spaniard pushed hard, found a quick pace and climbed to seventh.

Lorenzo Fellon, who was in tenth on the eighth lap of the race (the same position he had started from on the grid) suffered a mechanical issue when a piece of his bike broke, and had to come into the pits for his mechanics to address the problem. The Frenchman went back out on track to continue gaining experience, and completed the race.

The next race of the seven on this season’s calendar will be held on May 28th, at the Barcelona-Catalunya Circuit.

Results – Race

1. Adrian Huertas (Mir Racing) 24:20.443
2. Pedro Acosta (Mir Racing) +1.472
3. Barry Baltus (Ajo Academy) +4.906
4. Daniel Holdago (Beon) +15.433
5. Carlos Tatay (Beon) +15.507
7. Adrian Fernandez (Ajo Academy) +18.979
– Lorenzo Fellon (Ajo Academy) 5 laps

#7 Barry Baltus
“I have a bit of a bittersweet feeling about this first race of the year. On the one hand I am very happy to have achieved my first podium of the season, and to have started what is sure to be a tough year in this way. On the other hand, I think we could have done even better. The truth is that I was delighted with the setup of the bike this weekend; we have not changed it at all and I was able to dedicate my time to familiarising myself with the track. I felt very comfortable and strong on the bike, but this time we couldn’t get an even better result. The whole team have done a great job; now it’s time to think about the next race.”

#30 Lorenzo Fellon
“I made a good start. It wasn’t my best ever, but it allowed me to maintain my position. On the eighth lap I was riding comfortably in tenth position, when I noticed that a piece of the bike had broken. This has forced me to go through the pits -where the team did a great job so that I could go back out and complete the race. This helped me to continue gaining experience. It is a pity that this incident happened today, because the whole weekend has been very positive. It’s time to turn our focus to the next round.”

#31 Adrian Fernandez
“This first race in the PreMoto3 class has been very hard for me. It wasn’t an easy start, but little by little I felt much more comfortable, and that allowed me to gain positions and to approach the group in front of me. I pushed hard for many laps, but in the end I couldn’t do anymore and we settled for seventh position -which is a good result to start off with. I’m happy about how the entire weekend has gone. The qualifying session yesterday allowed me to start from fifth, which was good. I want to thank the whole team.”