bLU cRU Riders in the Thick of the Action During Misano Weekend
The four Yamaha R3 bLU cRU Challenge riders were all fully involved in what was a spectacular race during Round 6 of the 2018 FIM Supersport 300 World Championship at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli this weekend. Galang Hendra Pratama led the Yamaha charge in qualifying to secure his second successive pole position, but it was Luca Bernardi who came out on top in the race, missing out on a podium finish by the narrowest of margins as he secured his best result of the season so far with fourth place. Galang Hendra brought his R3 home in seventh ahead of Hugo de Cancellis who scored points in 14th. Dutchman Dennis Koopman crossed the line after 13 hard fought laps in 21st position.
Luca Bernardi (Yamaha Pata | Trasimeno Team) enjoyed his most successful race weekend to date at Misano. The 16-year-old San Marino rider made it into Superpole 2 for the first time this season and eventually secured his best qualifying position in sixth. Bernardi was involved in the fight at the front throughout the 13-lap race, but was unable to make a last lap pass on Manuel Gonzalez stick to secure the final podium position. Fourth place at the line was Bernardi's best result to date and one he hopes to build on next time out at Portimao. Bernardi now lies 18th in the championship standings with 19 points.
Galang Hendra Pratama (Yamaha Pata | Semakin di Depan | Biblion Motoxracing Team) completed a perfect qualifying session to secure his second successive pole position this weekend at Misano. The 19-year-old Indonesian rider briefly led the 13-lap race on Sunday, but was eventually caught and passed by a pack of riders frantically battling for position at every turn. Galang Hendra eventually finished the race in seventh position, which moved him up from eighth to sixth in the championship standings with 52 points.
Hugo de Cancellis (Yamaha Pata | Toth - YART Team) scythed his way through the field in Sunday's 13-lap race from 30th position on the grid, crossing the line in 14th place to secure his first championship points, moving him up to 27th in the series standings.
Dennis Koopman (Yamaha Pata | Semakin di Depan | GRT Team) struggled to find a good race set up over the Misano weekend; a problem that was exacerbated by a rain disrupted Free Practice 2. However, the 21-year-old Dutch rider gained more valuable experience in the race, which he finished in 23rd position. Koopman currently has 3 championship points, placing him 26th in the series standings.
Yamaha R3 bLU cRU Challenge Rider - 4th +0.352s
"I'm really happy to have had my best race weekend so far here at Misano in front of my home crowd. It was a difficult race because so many riders were battling closely for position. On the last lap I was pushing hard to overtake Gonzalez for the final podium position, but there just wasn't space to pass and I had to settle for fourth. Big thanks to my Trasimeno team for their hard work this weekend."
Galang Hendra Pratama
Yamaha R3 bLU cRU Challenge Rider - 7th +1.204s
"Qualifying was perfect and I was able to secure my second pole position in a row. I finished the race in seventh position and that was very important for the championship standings. In the race, the temperature was very hot and I tried to stay with the top group and managed to cross the line in seventh, which I was happy with after such a great battle. Thank you to Yamaha, my team and all my sponsors, I will do my best to be back on the podium at the next race in Portimao!"
Hugo de Cancellis
Yamaha R3 bLU cRU Challenge Rider - 14th +3.165s
"It was my first time at Misano, a beautiful track that was a lot of fun to race at. I had a good feeling with the bike all weekend and also gained valuable experience in the mixed conditions of FP2 on Friday. A small error with the strategy in qualifying meant I started the race from 30th position on the grid, but I was quickly able to find a good rhythm and that allowed me to make up a lot of places. On the last lap I managed to make contact with the leading group and eventually finished 14th, to secure my first championship points. Thanks to Yamaha, my team and my family for the support."
Yamaha R3 bLU cRU Challenge Rider - 21st +25.523
"Misano was another new track for me, so Free Practice on Friday was all about learning the layout and the lines. It's a more technical track than I expected and my feeling with the bike was also not so good. The rain on Friday afternoon meant we went into Superpole with a blind set up, which we changed for the race after qualifying in 32nd position. Things didn't go my way in the race, which I finished in 21st position. For the next round in Portimao I want to do better. Big thanks to my team once again for their support."
Yamaha Motor Europe bLU cRU Racing Manager
"Misano was another interesting and exciting race for our bLU cRU riders. The World Supersport 300 class and the next generation of riders never fail to add excitement and the bLU cRU guys were in the thick of it of all weekend.
Luca was superb in his home race and was unlucky to miss out on a podium finish by the narrowest of margins. Galang showed once again that he is a real talent for the future, with a clever ride in what was a hectic race to seventh place to secure more vital championship points. Congratulations also to Hugo, who realised his first goal this weekend with 14th place and his first championship points. Dennis gained a lot of valuable experience during his first race weekend at the Misano track and I'm sure we will see him show his true potential very soon.
Personally I am both happy and proud of the progress of all the bLU cRU riders and I would like to thank both them and their teams. Now we have a break before the next round in Portimao, during which we will take time to test and to work further with the riders before heading to Portugal for the next exciting challenge."