The second to last round of the season (nineteenth race of the 2023 calendar) at Lusail International Circuit, awarded the title of the Moto3 class.
Taiyo Furusato and Mario Aji arrived in Qatar with the aim to perform well after the Malaysian round where both riders suffered and rode below expectations.
Teams and riders found a renovated circuit: new tarmac, new paddock and different period compared to what they were used to.
The first day Taiyo and Mario struggled with slippery track conditions due to dust and they had difficulties in finding the right set up. The second day they improved but this was not enough to get good grid positions.
In the race both riders did a good start gaining many positions. Furusato performed spectacularly until a rider knocked him off the track, losing contact with the leading group. He crossed the finishing line 14th. For his part, Aji was penalized by a long lap penalty, which conditioned his race by closing 25th.
Next week the MotoGP circus comes back to Europe for the last appointment of the year: the grand finale at Valencia!
MOTO3: MARIO SURYO AJI #64
Grid P28– Race P25
A terrible weekend. The penalty of a long lap made the race even more challenging. It took a lot of work to keep pace when I lost contact with the group. During the first laps, I felt comfortable, but after the sanction, I lost everything, finishing a disappointing weekend. I did my best, but things could have gone better.
MOTO3: TAIYO FURUSATO #72
Grid P16– Race P14
I’ve done quite a strong race until the middle. After the weekend issues, I didn’t expect to fight in the top group, around positions 7 or 8. That’s positive because I come back to many places. But unfortunately, one rider touched me, getting me out and losing the line and contact with the group. Overall, I’m happy about my feeling again. Now is the time to think in the season’s last race in Valencia.
HIROSHI AOYAMA – Team Manager
Taiyo and Mario made a good start, gaining many positions. Taiyo chose the soft tire, using this benefit to catch up from the 17th to the 7th. But after the middle of the race, the tire drooped a lot, finishing 14th. Mario was penalized with a long lap. Until that moment, his pace was good, but after that, he lost contact with the group, finishing 25th. Both showed an improvement from yesterday, that’s the positive part, but we expected a better position in the race. That is part of the race; we should do it better in the next race.
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