Antonelli set for home race31/05/2017
Red Bull KTM Ajo rider comes into Italian GP with desire to get a good result in front of his fans, whilst Bo Bendsneyder will try to continue his recent progress.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 team hit Tuscany this weekend, for the sixth round of the season. Mugello will once again be the scene of the Italian Grand Prix, one of the most heavily attended events on the World Championship calendar. Niccolo Antonelli will be riding at his home race, and fighting for the podium which eluded him at Le Mans when he crashed out a fortnight ago. Teammate Bo Bendsneyder took his first Top 10 finish of the year at that round, consolidating his good feeling since the return of the series to Europe.
The Italian rider has a good chance to recover from the bittersweet taste left by the the French GP, where despite competing with the fastest riders he suffered a crash that kept him out of the fight for the rostrum at the end. Last year, Antonelli made an incredible comeback at Mugello, placing 4th and only 0.075s off the race winner from 21st on the grid. That equaled his best result at the Italian track, dating back to 2012.
Bendsneyder will look to continue an upturn in fortune this weekend at the Italian Grand Prix, as he feels more comfortable onboard his KTM bike with every passing round. In 2016, the Dutchman finished 18th in a tight race at Mugello, crossing the finish line just 2.5 seconds behind the winner.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo team hold 3 victories -Luis Salom in 2013, Miguel Oliveira in 2015 and Brad Binder in 2016- and 1 additional podium -Sandro Cortese 2012- from their appearances at Mugello over the last 5 years. The Moto3 World Championship race will be held at its usual time of 11am local time on Sunday, June 4th.
Circuit information – Mugello
Length: 5.245 m / 3.259 miles
Width: 15 metres
Left corners: 6
Right corners: 9
Longest straight: 1.141 m / 0.709 miles
23 NICCOLO ANTONELLI
“It is always very exciting for me to race at Mugello, because every race in Italy is very special. The objective should not be any different from the other rounds: Try to be fast during practice ahead of the race, and be able to stay in the lead group until the final laps -when everything is decided. We will work hard with the team over the three days to try to make this an ideal weekend.”
64 BO BENDSNEYDER
“We arrive in Mugello after a positive weekend at Le Mans, where we finished ninth. That follows the upward trend we started at Jerez. I like the circuit because it has many fast corners, which are the kind of turns I enjoy the most. I can’t wait to get onboard my KTM and to be in Italy, a country that I especially love. I hope we can be competitive again and fight from the beginning for a good position. We’ll see how it goes for us.”