Red Bull Rookie Cup: Intense season opener at Jerez
Race 1 – Cause and Effect, and Second Chances
Cause and Effect was the theme of race one at the Red Bull Rookies Cup this weekend in Jerez. A two-rider crash between Harry Stafford and Florian Marino halted the first race, resulting in a restart. Sturla Fagergaug crashed early on in the race and was half a lap behind the leaders when the race was restarted. A victory by way of second chances, Sturla Fagerhaug had to work until the last lap, but he became the leader and winner of race one of the Red Bull Rookies Cup at Jerez, Spain.
Mathew Scholtz must have had his rubber bands wound pretty tight, because he shot up from the start of the initial race, only to run off the track when the wind took control of his front. In a tense battle for the lead Stafford’s bike slid and he took a highside; Florian Marino clipped Stafford and went down as well, this is the crash that resulted in the restart.
Unable to make a second break away at the restart, Scholtz battled with Nelson Major, slowing the pack and inevitably allowing Fagerhaug the chance to gain some ground. Fagerhaug caught up to the pack, and his ability showed as he quickly overtook multiples of riders through the turns. Surprising the leaders, Fagerhaug appeared within reach in the last lap, continuing to push into first, taking the victory for the first race of the season.
Race 2 – ‘Win it or bin it’
Race two of the Red Bull Rookies Cup in Jerez, Spain was far less dramatic than the first, but still consisted of a few minor incidents. Alex Kristiansson led the pack through the first lap and looked like he would finish at the top, but in lap 5 the wind got under his KTM RC 125 and the 15 year old Swede was unable to regain control.
Daijiro Hiura started off in pole position, but by the end of the first lap found himself in fifth. A race between Danny Kent and Sturla Fagerhaug resulted in a last-lap pass by Kent to take the win. Kent explained, “Everytime I got in front the wind just pushed me back, it was so much easier to stay in the slipstream. There was no real way to break away. I wasn’t going to make the same mistake as yesterday so I kept counting down the laps as I crossed the line and went for it on the last lap, it wasn’t an easy move, I was determined, it was ‘win it or bin it.’”
Hiura moved up two places from fifth to finish third. Marino, coming from a trip to the hospital due to a crash the previous day, finished forth.