Everything is ready for the Shell Advance Talent Cup young riders to show their skills in Qatar


The preparation for the young competitors begins on Wednesday, the schedule is Qatar changed slightly and spread over four days.

here will first be a full day to review their Honda Moto3 NSF250Rs with their mechanics and check their protective equipment.

Thursday will see the riders partake in commercial filming, a riders’ briefing and a Media Opportunity (14:45 Local Time), the classic group photo (Grid) with all the riders of the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup. The track activity will begin with thirty minutes of Free Practice 1 at 16:50 Local Time.

Friday will see Free Practice 2 held at 13:55 Local Time and Qualifying at 16:40 Local Time. The riders will then have to wait patiently for their two races, with the first held at 16:00 Local Time on Saturday followed by Race 2 on Sunday at 13:50, both will be 14 laps. On Saturday there will also be time before the race to attend the ceremony in Doha city (11:30 Local Time) with Accenture, a learning partner of the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup, at the InterContinental Hotel The City.

The young riders of the Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup will have another special weekend, this time running alongside the opening round of the MotoGP World Championship.

The technical data of Qatar…
Circuit Length: 5.380 km / 3.343 miles     Pole Position: Left
Corners: 16   Right Corners: 10     Left Corners: 6

Qatar 2015 Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup Times Data
Circuit Record Lap: 2’10.860 H. Azman (MAL)
Pole Position: 2’10.607 N. Atiratphuvapat (THA)
Circuit Best Lap: 2’10.607 N. Atiratphuvapat (THA)

The schedule for the weekend is as follows (in local time, GMT+3):
Thursday 17 March  FP1  16:50 to 17:20
Friday 18 March  FP2   13:55 to 14:25      QP          16:40 to 17:10
Saturday 19 March               Race 1           16:00 (14 laps)
Sunday 20 March                  Race 2           13:50 (14 laps)

The season so far…   
The 2016-racing season kicked off last weekend in Buriram, Thailand at the Chang International Circuit which saw victories for Ai Ogura and Somkiat Chantra. Both head to Qatar tied on 38 points. Other prominent names include Gerry Salim, Ryusei Yamanaka and Andi Izdihar, the pole setter in Chang.

After the battle of Buriram, the on track show is guaranteed to excite at Qatar where two races will be held. Alberto Puig, Shell Advance Asia Talent Cup Director, was satisfied after the weekend in Thailand: “It’s more or less what we expected. We have two clear differentiated groups, but everything is ok. The bikes are working, the tyres are working and there weren’t any big injuries. We have a group of riders that are pushing a lot and I think they are going to come Europe in a few years and they are going to be strong. Now we are going to Qatar and let’s see what happen there.”

What happened in 2015…
The Qualifying session saw Nakarin Atiratphuvapat take pole with just 0.043s splitting the leading group of four riders at the end of the first race. During the race several riders including Atiratphuvapat, Izdihar, Chantra, Kunimine, Masaki and Sasaki constantly battled at the front, on the limit throughout. With the finish line in Qatar quite some distance down the straight, leading out of the last corner does not guarantee victory. Sasaki and Masaki battled hard but allowed Kunimine and Chantra to slip through to take first and second. Sasaki salvaged third.
The second race was a copy of the first with Andi Izdihar winning ahead of Sasaki and Chantra, another tight battle to the line with 0.029s splitting first and second.