This will be the second all-new circuit for the Kawasaki Puccetti Racing team to compete at in succession, after the most recent round at Most in the Czech Republic.
The layout of the 3.933km long Navarra track in the north of Spain is a known quantity to Öttl but not Öncü although neither has ridden their WorldSSP spec Ninja ZX-6R machines there in anger. Philipp rode his training bike there in May, simply to understand the circuit characteristics before the first practice sessions start for real this coming Friday.
It has been a very positive second season in WorldSBK racing for Öttl who has just had his 25th career race start in this category, which is designed for production-derived mid-capacity machinery.
So far Philipp has taken six podium finishes in 2021 and will enter the Navarra round in search of his first race win. He is third in the championship rankings after the scheduled 12-round series has just passed through its halfway point.
Also in his second season of WorldSSP racing, and with an identical 25 starts as his team-mate Öttl, 18 year old Öncü is improving with every weekend that passes. The immediate aim for the 2018 Rookies Cup champion is to turn his recent competitive form against some top WorldSSP rivals into podium finishes at the end of each Navarra race.
Can is in ninth place in the championship at the halfway point of the season, with 12 races across six rounds still to be run.
There will be two points scoring WorldSSP races at Navarra but the WorldSSP300 championship will not feature at this particular event.
After the ‘new kid’ that is Navarra has enjoyed its debut weekend, Magny Cours - an old favourite that has hosted 18 WorldSSP rounds in all - will form the backdrop for the seventh round of the championship, between 3-5 September.
Philipp Öttl, stated: “I’ve ridden the Navarra track with my training bike recently. It’s a unique place and one that I think can suit the characteristics of our Kawasaki. We had a positive round at Most last time out, where we battled hard for the victory, and I’m sure that we can be centre stage again at Navarra.”
Can Öncü, stated: “I’ve trained really hard since the Most round, especially with the supermotard and I feel ready to race at Navarra. It’s a brand-new track for me, but I usually learn new tracks quickly, and so I hope that’s true this weekend too. They tell me it’s a track with many turns, where the rider can make the difference and so I can’t wait to discover it with my Ninja ZX-6R.“
Raffaele De Rosa (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) will continue his season in search of another podium finish to add to his second place in Race One at Motorland Aragon. He is tenth overall, one place behind Can Öncü.
Michel Fabrizio (Motozoo Puccetti Racing Kawasaki) and Leonardo Taccini (Orelac Racing VerdNatura) sit 23rd and 35th in the championship points after six rounds.