Austria action

Keep off the paint – on the way to Misano success

We have some Misano magic in store this weekend and being an Italian round there is just one Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup race. So there is even more on the line this Saturday, a single outing for the KTM RC 250 Rs and after that just the two races in Aragon a week later to round out our season.

The Adriatic coast is party central but the lads can enjoy Saturday evening and cruise through Sunday, first they have to work: The usual two Free Practice sessions and the single Qualifying session on Friday.

Tatay's the man

Carlos Tatay has a handsome 63 point lead in the title chase but we all saw at the Red Bull Ring how easily things can go wrong, after a ride through for a jump start the 16-year-old Spaniard only finished 14th. On the other hand he has been on the podium in every other race this year so he has an incredible record.

Tatay should wrap up the title and needs at least 12 points or a 4th place to do that assuming his nearest rival, Pedro Acosta, wins and picks up the 25. The 15-year-old Spanish challenger won Race 1 in Austria when Tatay jumped the start but was only 5th in Race 2. That's hardly a criticism as he was only 0.334 seconds off the winner but in his first Rookies Cup season he has yet to find Tatay's incredible pace and consistency.

Kunii's unlucky

It is only Acosta who really stands any chance of denying Tatay the Cup. His next nearest rival, Yuki Kunii, was able to race him well from the start of the season but the 16-year-old Japanese has been unlucky with two injuries to his right hand. The most recent the result of a start line incident when he had a Moto3 Grand Prix wild card ride in Brno and that has not healed as quickly as he hoped so he misses Misano and plans to ride in Aragon.

That will be too late for the title chase but fellow Japanese Haruki Noguchi, the 18-year-old who won Race 2 in Austria after finishing 3rd in Race 1 does still have a mathematical chance. He has to win all three races with Tatay staying at the beach though, so he will just be focussed on the individual races and while he is new to Misano that has not hindered him much so far this year.

Others are frustrated

Noguchi had been very frustrated by his lack of a race win while interestingly the next two riders in the points table are still looking for their first appearance on the rostrum. Jason Dupasquier, the 18-year-old Swiss was 4th in Jerez 2 and has since been 5th twice. French 15-year-old Lorenzo Fellon has been 5th three times. He should have been on the podium in Jerez but lost that position for exceeding track limits too many times.

Track limits are a big issue in Misano and the boys have been warned. They have no excuse for not realising they are off the usable tarmac after that graphic genius Aldo Drudi splashed his paint around a few years ago. There is always something beautiful to look at in Misano but I doubt that your gaze will wander from the track action during the Rookies Cup race.