The Assen circuit, also known as the ‘Cathedral of Motorcycle Racing’, hosts the eighth round of the Moto3 World Championship calendar this weekend. After missing out on the podium by half a lap last time out, Niklas Ajo is after a rostrum finish at the historic track. Danny Kent placed outside the points for the first time this season in Catalonia, and wants to get back to adding to his tally on Saturday in the Netherlands.
It was only a scare on the final lap that kept Avant Tecno Husqvarna Ajo rider Niklas Ajo from his first World Championship podium a fortnight ago. The Finn is thus highly motivated and knows what he has to do in Assen –one of the tracks where he has achieved his best results. He has placed in the Top 10 for the last two years there.
Danny Kent, meanwhile, wants to put the last Grand Prix behind him. The first of the season in which he failed to score any points, the visit to Catalonia was a difficult one for the Briton. The Dutch track that hosts this weekend’s race is a good place for the Red Bull Husqvarna Ajo rider to get back amongst the points, and he has great memories of the circuit that was the scene of his first Grand Prix podium in 2012 –when he finished third.
As an exceptional case on the calendar, albeit traditional for this particular round, the Dutch TT will be held on Saturday at 11am and practice begins on Thursday.
Circuit information – Assen
Length: 4.542 m / 2.822 miles
Width: 14 metres
Left corners: 6
Right corners: 12
Longest straight: 487 m / 0.303 miles
”In Catalonia we had the best race of the season so far, so I’m looking forward to getting back onboard my Husqvarna and continuing with the same feelings and the same pace we achieved in the last race. In addition, Assen is a track I like and where I have taken good results recently, so I can’t wait to start the Grand Prix. My left elbow, which I dislocated at the last race, is much better. Although it still hurts a bit, I’ll be ready to compete in the race. We are on the right track, but we cannot be complacent and we must continue to work hard. The objective must still be to complete every lap in the lead group. We must not put more pressure on ourselves. If we are lucky enough to be in the first group on the final laps, then we will fight to place as high up as possible.”
”This week I am more optimistic than ever, because Assen is one of my favourite tracks and, for me personally, it is one of the most anticipated races of the year. Moreover, in 2012 I took my first podium in the World Championship there; it was amazing, so I can’t wait to get there and get back onboard the Husqvarna. It’s a track that I love and somewhere that I really enjoy riding. Over these two weeks I’ve been at home training harder than ever, because I hope that, working hard in practice, I can achieve a good result and take as many points as possible.”