Deniz Öncü scores best result with P6 – Ayumu Sasaki 19th in tough Valencia challenge
Red Bull KTM Tech3’s Deniz Öncü delivered a fantastic penultimate round of the 2020 season today in sunny Valencia. The Moto3 World Championship rookie started from P11, but lost two positions on the first lap. Yet, he was quickly fighting his way back to eighth on lap two. Öncü made up even more ground later, fighting for fourth with championship leader Albert Arenas at half distance to eventually finish in sixth, which is his best result to date.
At the same time, Ayumu Sasaki came from P26 on the grid, making his way into the top 20 quickly after the start and even went on towards P16 until he got a long lap penalty, which made him eventually losing his chances to fight for championship points. The Japanese youngster saw the chequered flag in 19th.
“This week we can say, that we have one of the best GP’s this year, plus I scored my personal best result in this category with P6. I’m quite happy, because I was fighting with a great group, including the championship leader. These guys are really strong. I’m super happy about the work we did this weekend, because I was fast and consistent in every session, started from P11 and finished in P6. So, I want to say a huge thank you to the team, because they work so hard and gave me a great bike, plus to everyone, who is supporting me. I will try to do this again for the final round in Portimao.”
“For me it was a difficult weekend and it was harder than I expected. Friday was already not easy and on Saturday I couldn’t really find a decent rhythm, so we ended up in 26th, which cost us a lot today. I started quite well, but then I was inside a big group. A few riders in the front were slower than me, so it was difficult to manage my pace, plus I had some contact to other riders. Then I got the long lap penalty and everything went just wrong. We definitely had the speed, as you could see in Warm Up, where we ended up in P1. So, I’m very disappointed, because I know we can do much better. I also did many mistakes this weekend. Now we need to focus on the next round, especially on Saturday. We will have to try to do well in Qualifying and then I’m sure we can have a better race.“