Courtesy of KRT – Kawasaki Racing Team
After suffering fractures to his pelvis at the French round of the championship in September it looked like Kawasaki Puccetti Racing rider Kenan Sofuoglu would be out for the rest of the season but he will line up for FP1 at the Losail International Circuit season finale this coming weekend. Anthony West will ride the team’s other machine and try to repeat or better his third place finish at the previous round in Spain.
Five-time world champion Sofuoglu has taken the brave decision try for just one more win in the 2017 season despite his recent pelvic injury. He is the only rider who can, mathematically speaking, stop Lucas Mahias from lifting the crown in Losail this weekend.
Sofuoglu needs to win the race and see his rival score a very few points, or Kenan finish second and Mahias not score at all, to lift what would be his sixth world championship. Kenan has five 2017 race wins to his credit.
As things stand, Kenan has been allowed to ride in FP1 and then a further medical examination will take place to see if he will be permitted to continue through the rest of the weekend.
Australian rider Anthony West will come back for more after his recent brilliant top three showing at Jerez last time out, in what will be only his second ride for the team. He was just 1.652 seconds from the winning rider at Jerez.
The final race of the 12 round season will be the first to be held on a Saturday, with the race taking place on 4th November.
Kenan Sofuoglu, stated: “After France it looked like we had finished our season after the crash. All the doctors were thinking it would be a minimum eight weeks in bed and the final recovery of maybe a minimum 12 weeks. The medical staff told me they would let me ride the bike tomorrow. Then they want to see how I am and how I feel after first practice. I think it will be OK but they just want to make another assessment after the first free practice session. I will be very happy if I can really ride my bike.”
Anthony West, stated: “After the race in Jerez I can come here to Losail with a bit of confidence on the bike and feeling good from the podium we scored in Spain. I know the track layout pretty well as I have done some Qatar championship rounds in the past. I feel good about it and I am looking forward to racing here. Hopefully we can compete here with the same feeling, and at the same level, as Jerez. I feel like we should be able to do it and I would definitely like to finish the season well here.”
Michael Canducci (3570 Puccetti Racing FMI Kawasaki) is currently in 14th place on his Kawasaki, with Kazuki Watanabe (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven) in 20th place.
Gino Rea (Team Kawasaki Go Eleven) is now 19th in the points; Nacho Calero (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) is 28th, one place above Lachlan Epis (Response RE Racing Kawasaki). Zulfahmi Khairuddin (Orelac Racing VerdNatura Kawasaki) remains 34th.