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Turkish motorcyclists Sofuoğlu, Öncü brace for World Supersport

Turkish motorcycle riders Bahattin Sofuoğlu and Can Öncü are gearing up to compete for the top spot in the upcoming season of the World Supersport Championship, where they will not only challenge each other but also their competitors in the same category.

The new season of the championship, in which Sofuoğlu and Öncü will compete, will kick off with the first leg races in Australia from Feb. 23-25.

Sofuoğlu, who raced for the MV Agusta Reparto Corse team, finished sixth in the previous season, while Öncü, who suffered an arm injury after a crash in the third leg and stayed away from the tracks for about four months, finished 13th.

The national riders, who have completed their preparations for the new season, are looking to make a strong start at the Australian leg of the event and progress toward their championship goal.

Championship goals

Speaking with Anadolu Agency (AA), Sofuoğlu gave credit to the team’s intense 3.5-month preseason preparations.

Sofuoğlu stated that this is the most prepared period he has ever been in and mentioned that they will take part in the first race of the season after the tests.

Pointing out that he and Öncü compete in the same category, Sofuoğlu said: “We all work together. There are five of us at the KNN54 Riders Racing Academy. When we go out to race, everyone becomes a competitor. No one recognizes anyone on the track. When everyone closes the visor of their helmet, they strive to be the best. I am the same way. We race in the same place, we train in the same place. Everyone is a competitor on the track, and the best one wins.”

Sofuoğlu stated that they achieved their goal set for last season and said: “Our goal this year is the championship. I will do my best. We will start to see more clearly at the beginning and middle of the season. Then I can speak more clearly. Everyone’s goal is the championship. I will strive for that too.”

Öncü feels good

Can Öncü stated that his tests before the World Supersport Championship went well, which made him happy.

Öncü, who wants to be on the podium by doing his best, said: “I finished third in the race I competed in before my arm surgery. At that time, my ability to use my arm was 10%, now it’s 90%. There is a huge difference. I feel good about myself, and I can use my arm as before.”

Emphasizing that he and Sofuoğlu are competitors, Öncü said: “I hope to become world champion this year. Kenan (Sofuoğlu) became champion with Kawasaki. No one has been able to become a champion with Kawasaki for a long time. I also want to be a world champion with Kawasaki this year. I believe that we will plan the future with Kenan in the best way.”

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