Moto2 2021
Round 11

Ogura takes aim at the podium once again

at Red Bull Ring - Spielberg

Ai Ogura (IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia Kalex) can’t wait to get back to work at Red Bull Ring on Friday, just five days after he battled for victory in the Styrian Grand Prix at the track.

Ogura takes aim at the podium once again

The 20-year-old from Tokyo, who only graduated from Moto3 to Moto2 at the start of the year, rode a superb race last Sunday to hunt down leader Marco Bezzecchi (SKY Racing Team VR46 Kalex), proving that the brilliant concept of the Honda-backed Asia Talent Cup is bearing fruit.

With four laps remaining Ogura was less than half a second behind the 22-year-old Italian and closing, when he was given a long-lap penalty for exceeding track limits. That sanction dropped him to fifth at the finish, despite the fact that he rode the fastest lap of the race on the last lap.

The result itself was a disappointment for Ogura, but more importantly the strength of his ride gives him the confidence that he has the talent and the speed to challenge for Moto2 podiums and even race wins.

Ogura and his technicians will aim to further improve his pace for Sunday’s race, with the hope of scoring his first top-three result in MotoGP’s intermediate class.

Team-mate Somkiat Chantra (IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia Kalex) also aims for improvements this weekend, after scoring his best-ever World Championship result last Sunday, three places behind Ogura in eighth.

The 22-year-old Thai rider is contesting his second World Championship season and is showing some impressive speed and consistency as his experience of GP racing increases.

Current leader of the 2021 Moto2 title battle is Remy Gardner (Red Bull KTM Ajo Kalex), who will be aiming for victory after a rare mistake most likely cost him the win last Sunday. The 23-year-old Australian finished the race in fourth, just ahead of Chantra, but nevertheless increased his points advantage because team-mate and number-one title rival Raul Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo Kalex) could only manage seventh.

Gardner now enjoys a 35-point advantage over Fernandez, with Bezzecchi third overall, a further nine points down. Sam Lowes (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex) is fourth in the championship but 52 points behind Bezzecchi.

Once the Styrian GP is finished, Moto2 teams will pack up for the long drive to the UK, for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone on 29th August.

Ai Ogura
Ai Ogura 79
IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia
Now we have our second race in Austria, after last weekend, which was quite nice for us. It was clearly our best performance of this season. Unfortunately the position in which we finished was not what we wanted but I’m very happy because it was a good weekend for us and now I am full motivated for this weekend. Luckily we have one more race here, so we will go to get what we lost last week and just enjoy giving our best performance.

Somkiat Chantra
Somkiat Chantra 35
IDEMITSU Honda Team Asia
This weekend we have another race in Austria, after quite a good result last Sunday. We will use the same plan and approach as last weekend, but we had some issues in the race, so we will try changing something in the bike to be better in the next race and we will stay very focused on our job.

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