Can Öncü wraps up a solid weekend at the Grand Prix of Japan20/10/2019
The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 rider was 18th in the race, as he made his comeback from a left shoulder injury.
Can Öncü returned to Moto3 World Championship racing this weekend after a month out due to injury and, despite still not being at 100% physically, he was in with a chance of finishing in the points right up until the end. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rider produced a competitive performance in the second group, setting the same lap times as the race leaders, and ultimately crossing the finish line at the Japanese Grand Prix in a hard-earned 18th position.
Öncü got away from the eighth row of the grid, making a great start despite suffering a slight coming together with another rival. The Red Bull KTM Ajo rookie gradually moved up through the field right from the first lap, joining a large group. At mid-race, several crashes split the field and, despite often lapping faster than the riders at the front of the race, Can ended up in the chasing pack, fighting for points. After an intense finale, the Turkish youngster crossed the finish line in 18th position, less than two seconds from the Top 10.
The Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 team will now head for Philip Island, where the second of the triple header of flyaway races takes place next weekend, from 25th to 27th October, at the Australian Grand Prix.
Results (Moto3 Race)
1. Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Honda) 39:34.866
2. Albert Arenas (KTM) +0.094
3. Celestino Vietti (KTM) +0.198
4. Tatsuki Suzuki (Honda) +0.289
5. Sergio Garcia (Honda) +0.437
18. Can Öncü (Red Bull KTM Ajo) +13.940
Moto3 World Championship Standing 2019
1. Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Honda) 229 points
2. Aron Canet (KTM) 182 points
3. Tony Arbolino (Honda) 161 points
4. Marcos Ramirez (Honda) 144 points
5. John McPhee (Honda) 136 points
30. Can Öncü (Red Bull KTM Ajo) 4 points
Aki Ajo – Team manager
“It was a good weekend for Can [Öncü] as he came back from the injury he suffered to his left collarbone. We didn’t know if he would get here at 100% but he has finally done a solid job. I am happy to see that in the race he was able to make up several positions and fight to the end.”
61 CAN ÖNCÜ
“It was a good race. We started from quite far back on the grid, but we managed to move up and I’m very happy about that. I’m looking forward to the next Grand Prix, to continue working really hard and to try to get a better result. We’re not going to give up. I want to thank the whole team, who have been working very hard throughout the weekend in Japan.”