CEV Buckler to commence at Jerez this weekend with many Spanish preseason favourites
The CEV Buckler 2011 gets underway at the Jerez Circuit this weekend for which a total of 130 riders have registered to compete across the four categories; 125GP, Moto2, Stock Extreme and Kawasaki Ninja Cup.
The 125GP category will see 33 hopefuls sharing the track, the majority of whom are youngsters who have graduated to the CEV Buckler from their respective different national cup competitions. The international profile of the CEV Buckler remains a major theme with more than 50% of the grid – a total of 18 riders – arriving from other countries to participate. Italy is the main proponent, with France, England, Australia, Japan and India also amongst those represented.
The pre-season predictions place Alex Rins as the main favourite, and he is the only rider present in the entry list with experience of winning a CEV race. His team-mate Alex Márquez will be a main rider to watch, as will the emerging Josep Rodríguez (after his fantastic debut as a wild card at Jerez), Jorge Navarro, and debutant Albert Arenas. Present for this opening round will be the Italian-Indian World Championship team WTR-Ten10 Racing, with Italian Champion Francesco Mauriello and Indian rider Sarath Kumar using the CEV Buckler as a platform to acquire further important experience for the World Championship stage.
In Moto2 three-times Spanish Champion Carmelo Morales heads a highly intriguing entry list, which stands at no less than 37 riders. This year the top two finishers in last year\’s Championship will share the same team garage, with Jordi Torres and Morales both riding for the Laglisse team. The international flavour will remain at a premium, with riders who competed in the World Championship last season in the shape of Tomoyoshi Koyama (Japan) and Lukas Pesek (Czech Republic) taking part, whilst the Red Bull Rookies Cup has also provided some talented new faces with 2010 Champion Jake Gagne (US) and his new team-mate Matthew Scholz (South Africa) making the step up.
Stock Extreme continues to preserve its status as a category which combines both great competitiveness with affordable costs, as reflected in its entry list of 38 riders. On a sporting level Javier del Amor has passed from Ducati to BMW for this season, where he inherits the bike of 2010 Champion Javier Forés, and where he lines up alongside Dani Rivas as a team-mate. Kawasaki will also present a new line-up, which includes European Champion Santiago Barragán and the always competitive Iván Silva.
The fifth edition of the Kawasaki Ninja Cup counts 22 entries, and Jerez will be the first of five races which form its calendar. Amongst the riders whose presence will be keenly noted will be Adrián Araujo, one of the most noted 125GP riders of recent years and who has chosen the Ninja Cup as the ideal platform for his return to competition.
The time schedule for Sunday’s races is as follows:
13:30 Kawasaki Ninja Cup
14:30 Stock Extreme
TVE continues to support the CEV Buckler for a further year in 2011 and will broadcast for one hour on La1 on Sunday from 12.30. The 125GP race will be broadcast live, with extended highlights of the Moto2 race following.