Red Bull KTM Ajo Moto3 duo face new challenge at Qatar Grand Prix15/11/2023
Deniz Öncü and Jose Antonio Rueda arrive ready after a bittersweet Malaysian Grand Prix.
The Qatar Grand Prix takes place this weekend on an atypical date. Usually the season opener, the Lusail International Circuit instead hosts the penultimate round of the campaign in 2023. After the Malaysian Grand Prix, where Deniz Öncü finished twelfth and Jose Antonio Rueda suffered a crash, the Red Bull KTM Ajo duo are determined to fight for great results.
Öncü enjoyed an outstanding weekend in Sepang, fighting for the podium positions at a demanding circuit. Despite a crash and his placing eleventh on that occasion, he faces his last two races in Moto3 with the desire to continue fighting for the top spots. The Turkish rider came close to the rostrum in Qatar in 2022, finishing fourth. With 196 points, he remains fifth in the overall standings.
Rueda had a positive weekend in Sepang. Despite it being an unknown circuit for the Moto3 rookie, he took a big step forward and was able to stay in the front group for much of the race, until a small mistake caused him to crash. Whilst his final result in the Malaysian GP did not reflect the work done, Rueda arrives in Qatar focused on continuing to progress at a new circuit. He remains eleventh overall with 111 points.
Red Bull KTM Ajo are third in the team standings with 307 points. In 2021 they were on the podium in Qatar with wins for Jaume Masia’s win and and Pedro Acosta’s second place; as well as Acosta’s victory at the Doha Grand Prix that same season. In 2018, Jorge Martin also won at the Qatari circuit. The 16-lap Moto3 race will begin at 5 PM local time on Sunday 19th November.
#53 DENIZ ÖNCÜ
“After an unexpected end to the weekend in Malaysia, I feel strong enough to fight for the victory in Qatar. We know that the straights are our weak point, so I’ll need to be at my best when cornering. We are ready to fight again and we will enjoy the weekend in Lusail.”
#99 JOSE ANTONIO RUEDA
“We arrive in Qatar with a not very good feeling after last weekend, although we were happy with the bike and the work we did with the team. I think that this time we will be able to do well again in Qatar, even if we don’t know the circuit. We have to continue learning and do our best, to finish these last two races in the best way.”