The 2017 KTM RC Cup World Final began in perfect conditions today at Spain’s Circuito de Velocidad, Jerez, and saw Great Britain’s Jack Nixon end the day in provisional pole position.
The event brings the 30 top-tiered riders of the nine KTM RC Cup series from around the world to discover who is the ‘best of the best’. All armed with identical specification Cup versions of the popular KTM RC 390, the one-off round, supporting the World Superbike championship, provides these future stars with a high-profile opportunity to prove their skills in an ultimate battle of talent, speed and discipline in front of a global audience.
Representing 11 different nationalities, almost all the young racers had never seen the fast flowing 4.42 km Spanish circuit before, so began their preparation by taking advantage of a track walk with former MotoGP rider and KTM RC Cup ambassador, Jeremy McWilliams.
Early afternoon’s Free Practice saw Brazil’s Brian David Hart go fastest, posting a 2’03.838 lap. The 15-year old, who lives in Spain, has been the first rider to compete in two different KTM RC Cup series in one season, placing third overall in the British series and second overall in the German championship. Fast on every circuit, the Team Germany representative could take advantage of a circuit he was familiar with for the first time this year.
Unfortunately, Muhammad Izam I. B. Izamli crashed out on his no.7 RC 390 and sustained a hand injury, ruling the fast Malaysian rider out of action for the remainder of the weekend. The entire RC Cup paddock wishes him a speedy recovery.
The temperature turned hotter in every respect for the youngsters in Qualifying 1 at 17:45, with track conditions at 30°C for the 30-minute session. With all riders now familiar with the circuit and tuning both themselves and the RC 390s for optimum performance, the lap times soon fell.
Britain’s Jack Nixon, a close runner-up in the UK series, posted the fastest time on the very final lap with a 2’02.357, followed closely by Brian Hart (Germany), Cory Venture (USA) and British RC Cup champion, Fenton Seabright. The top 13 riders were all within two seconds of each other and will no doubt go even faster for Qualifying 2, held tomorrow (Saturday) at 15:45 CET.
KTM RC Cup World Final 2017 RESULTS: Qualifying 1st Session
- Jack Nixon #14 (GBR) 2’02.357
- Brian Hart #29 (BRA) 2’02.453
- Cory Ventura #9 (USA) 2’02.704
- Fenton Seabright #15 (GBR) 2’02.733
- Aaron Schaefer #12 (GER) 2’03.374
- Guus Boes #24 (NED) 2’03.453
- Milan Merckelbagh #25 (NED) 2’03.797
- Muhammad I. B. Mohd Norrodin #8 (MAL) 2’03.875
- Lee Doti #20 (CH) 2’03.925
- Glenn van Straalen #26 (NED) 2’04.042