The official race report service of Kawasaki Racing Team.

6 April 2022

Final Test Progress For Öncü And Montella

Kawasaki Puccetti Racing riders Can Öncü and Yari Montella are now fully prepared to face the new-style FIM Supersport World Championship after completing a successful official test session at Motorland Aragon, shortly before the new season starts there this coming weekend.

Existing Kawasaki Puccetti Racing team-member Can and new signing Yari enjoyed two cold but dry days of testing at the 5.077km long Motorland circuit, between 4-5 April, in company with all their rivals for honours in 2022.

At the end of the tests Öncü placed third fastest, with his new team-mate sixth. Can was only 0.135 seconds from the leading rider and Yari 0.681 seconds behind, in a field of 30 riders.

After a major change in the permitted engine sizes for this year in WorldSSP, the potential competition has expanded, with the ‘traditional’ 600cc four-cylinder machines now joined by 765 and 800cc triples and 955cc twins.

With both Kawasaki Puccetti Racing Ninja ZX-6R riders inside the top six on their 599cc machines at this official test all team members are confident and well-prepared to take on their latest global challenge.

Entering his third season in WorldSSP, former Rookies Cup champion Öncü is still only 18 years of age. The Turkish rider has scored three podiums finishes from his 39 WorldSSP race starts. Race wins and a consistent podium challenge are his main goals for the 2022 season.

Montella, now 22 years-of-age, raced as a wildcard in the Portimao WorldSSP races last year and was the CEV Moto2 Champion in 2020, scoring no fewer than eight race wins on his way to ultimate victory.

Now part of one of the most successful and respected teams in the paddock, Montella has already shown good pace and promise as he sets out on a 12-round, 24 race WorldSSP Championship that will travel all over Europe and finish with three ‘long haul’ rounds in Argentina, Indonesia and Australia.

The first round of the 2022 season takes place at Motorland Aragon, between 8-10 April. Round Two will be held at the classic Assen circuit in the Netherlands, between 22-24 April.

Can Öncü, stated: “I feel really good and very positive because in our first two tests, and then the final one at Motorland, we were really fast. We were not bad, on a good level at the official tests. I was on an even faster pace but one rider got in the way on the final sector, so I know we can go even quicker. I am quite relaxed. For the first race we have brand new bikes and we are riding at a good pace. At the first round we will try to win. I do not want to think about the championship; I just want to get on as many podiums as possible.”

Yari Montella, stated: “Two very important days here in Motorland. We’ve worked very well, although the morning sessions were really cold. I’m constantly learning more about how to exploit the potential of my bike, which is also thanks to my technicians’ great work. They now know how to adapt the settings to my riding style. I’m still lacking something in terms of both my race pace, and over the flying lap, but we’re in a good position and have significant room for improvement. During Friday’s practice sessions we’ll continue with the work we began this week. As for the first round, I’d say I’m optimistic, because I like the track and have always been fast here.”

Jeffrey Buis (Motozoo Racing by Puccetti Kawasaki) tested at Motorland alongside his peers but his regular 2022 team-mate Benjamin Currie had to miss the pre-season test because of an injury sustained after a training accident in February.