YZ bLU cRU SuperFinale delivers thrilling day one action
The YZ bLU cRU FIM Europe Cup riders delivered a highly entertaining show on Saturday on the first day of the SuperFinale at Monster Energy MXoN at the TT Circuit Assen in the Netherlands.
For the first time in the history of the bLUcRU program the field was split into 65, 85 and 125 classes, totaling nearly 100 of the most promising young Yamaha riders in Europe racing on the same track as the pro MXGP riders.
Beginning with a damp opening free practice session in the morning, the YZ65 youngsters were the first competitors to ride the newly built sand track. Followed by the 85 and 125 classes, the YZ bLUcRU relished the opportunity to test their machinery and talents on the world stage for the first time, having made the cut for the SuperFinale based on their respective national championship results.
The YZ65 and YZ85 classes held their SuperFinale races on Saturday also, putting on two thrilling races for the packed Assen grandstands. In the YZ65 field of 36 entrants local rider #484 Dex Kooiker set the pace in timed practice on a lap of 2’17.979, followed by Latvian rider #727 Jekabs Kubulins and Finnish rider #777 Viktor Leppaelae. As the race came around and the gate dropped Kubulins took the holeshot, establishing a commanding lead at the front. Behind him a close fight for second and third ensued, Swedish rider #292 Freddie Bartlett starting well to hold second ahead of Dane #80 Frederik Rahn Stampe. With the sun shining track conditions improved and aided Kubulins in maintaining his lead to take the chequered flag by 12.2s, joined on the podium by Bartlett and Rahn Stampe in second and third.
Following straight on from the youngest riders, the YZ85 class took positions at the gate. In timed practice Dutch rider #567 Levi Schrik set the pace with a 2’04.096, just edging out Norwegian #78 Adrian Bolviken in second ahead of Swedish rider #192 Hamilton Eriksson. As anticipation built for another gate drop in quick succession, the 27 YZ85 youngsters took their starting positions. Schrik made a quick getaway ahead of Bolviken, with a strong start from Swede #910 Olle Martensson propelling him up the order. A close battle for the top five places ensued, Martensson dicing with Schrik for the lead while Bolviken and Eriksson battled for the final podium place. Ultimately Martensson’s pace proved strongest, taking victory by 11 seconds ahead of Schrik and Bolviken who fended off a tough attacked from Eriksson.
The top three finishers and two carefully chosen wildcards in each SuperFinale category will now be picked to attend the bLUcRU Masterclass 18, 19 & 20 November in Spain, where they will hone their skills further under professional tutelage as they begin their international racing journeys.
The YZ125 riders will begin their race on Sunday at 09:20 local time to close the 2019 YZ bLUcRU FIM Europe Cup SuperFinale and begin another exciting chapter in the Yamaha bLUcRU story.