Double winner for the weekend in Jerez, Bo Bendsneyder, the 16-year-old Dutchman, made Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup Race 2 very different by charging away from the pack. Three seconds behind him at the flag was Fabio Di Giannantonio, the 16-year-old Italian who had to fight all the way to come out ahead of the seven rider scrap for second.
Australian 17-year-old Olly Simpson took third for the second time in the weekend and admitted that he was a touch lucky to be on the podium again. He benefited when Japanese 15-year-old Kaito Toba collected his 14-year-old fellow countryman Ayumu Sasaki at the last corner.
After having to work hard on his KTM RC 250 R for all of the 16 laps in Race 1, Bendsneyder changed tactics for the encore. "I thought about yesterday's race and I was looking back at the other guys too much. It isn't me to do that and I was determined to keep my focus ahead this time."
"It also wasn't as hot today and with a little more grip I could push the lap times and I concentrated on that. It wasn't easy though even once I had made the break, it was still hard work, I kept pushing to make sure I kept the concentration up and it worked out brilliantly. We've got a bit of a break now and I can't wait for the next race at home in Assen," concluded the winner of last year's Race 2 at the Dutch TT.
Disappointed with fifth yesterday, Di Giannantonio was determined to get on the podium this time. "It was such a great race, we were passing everywhere, one corner I was second the next I was fifth, it changed all the time. I knew I had to find something extra for the last lap and I gave it everything, full gas and just far enough ahead not to be passed, fantastic!"
Simpson leaves Spain second in the Cup table, a single point ahead of Di Giannantonio after an impressive event including being second fastest in practice and being quickest off the line in both races. "That was good, another very hard race, fighting with the other guys all the way. I really enjoyed it and am happy with two podiums, I hadn't been up here in Rookies Cup before this weekend even if maybe I was a bit lucky the second time. But as they say you've got to finish if you want to be up here," he concluded from the podium, his usual smile perhaps hiding a touch of frustration that he was not on the top step.
Greater frustration for Oscar Gutierrez who was second on Saturday. A last lap error perhaps cost the 15-year-old Spaniard the win then and it certainly cost him a podium in Race 2 as he almost highsided exiting the Dry Sack hairpin half way round the last lap and only had 6th at the line.
Fourth was Spanish 15-year-old Rufino Florido who had also had a fine ride to seventh on Saturday. "Yes that was a lot of fun, I really enjoyed it. Today I made a better start but I was soon worried about the front, it was sliding wide and causing me problems. I had to be slower going into the corner and try to be faster coming out. That worked OK but when it came down to the last lap it meant that I couldn't catch Simpson through the fast rights down to the hairpin so I had not chance to pass him at the last corner. Still it was a great way to start Rookies Cup," concluded the newcomer.
A great start to the year also for Enzo Boulom who is in his second season as the 18-year-old Frenchman fought through to battle for the rostrum places. "We changed the bike from yesterday and now I could battle on the brakes so I enjoyed the fight. Just at the end the rear was sliding a lot so I couldn't quite make the podium this time," explained the fifth place finisher.
Races 3 and 4 in the 13 race season are at Assen in the Netherlands on June 26th and 27th.
View Jerez Race 2 here