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29 May 2021

Öttl Second In First Estoril WorldSSP Race

Kawasaki Puccetti Racing rider Philipp Öttl scored a strong second place from a front row starting position in WorldSSP Race One at Estoril. His team-mate Can Öncü was looking forward to a positive top ten performance but he experienced technical issues with his machine and had to retire from the 18-lap race.

A second place finish in the opening race of the FIM Supersport World Championship round at Estoril was a season-best for Öttl. The German rider pushed on hard from a second place start after Superpole qualifying. This was his sixth career podium since joining WorldSSP and Kawasaki for the first time last season.

Leading for most of the race, with only eventual race winner Steven Odendaal ahead at times, Öttl used his bike and tyre performance well to finish within 0.350 seconds of victory despite often windy and challenging riding conditions. Second place today was also Philipp’s equal best WorldSSP showing, having taken second place in the opening race at Estoril last season.

Can Öncü went from 13th on lap one to seventh on lap seven but he dropped back and was then forced out. Now he looks to the second 18-lap Estoril race to go for his best finish since joining the team for the 2021 season.

One more WorldSSP race at Estoril remains on Sunday 30 May.
Philipp Öttl, stated: “Today was a good day and we had a really good qualifying. The 20 points for second place were very important. I tried my best to win and I will try tomorrow again. I think here we have a good chance to win but today, second place was good. The bike and team worked well all weekend long, like in Aragon, but here it looks like we have a better chance because at the end of the race all the other riders have similar grip conditions to us. Now the bike on the straight works well and I am happy to be honest. I was leading almost the whole race and on the brakes I was really strong into turn one. I tried to force the bike to the limit. Second place at the moment seems like the best position we could get but I think compared to last year it is possible to do better.”

Can Öncü, stated: “We worked really hard in this weekend and in the previous round at Aragon. We were making a top ten finish but in the race we had some technical problems so we could not finish the race. Lap by lap it was even more of an issue so we had to stop. I am just disappointed, very sad but we need to look positively at the fact that we were only a few seconds from the front. I think we could have a much better race tomorrow because I have good feelings and I will try to do my best - and we will see.”

Raffaele De Rosa (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) continued his good form from a podium showing at the previous Motorland Aragon race weekend to finish sixth today.

Michel Fabrizio (Motozoo Puccetti Racing Kawasaki) just missed out on a point with 16th place in his second comeback race. Leonardo Taccini (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) was 17th in Race One and Shogo Kawasaki (Motozoo Puccetti Racing) 24th.