In the middle of the summer break, let’s take a look at the main characters of the 2022 middle division season
The summer break has arrived for the Moto2™ World Championship riders. With a few well-deserved weeks off before returning to the track at Silverstone, motogp.com takes a look back at the highlights of the first half of the 2022 campaign. Prove your level, others will battle it out in the most important battle of the season; world title.
With 225 points in play, the list of contenders for the crown has been narrowed considerably after 11 races, although nothing is done. Among the main candidates for the coronation we find:
Celestina Vietti (1st place, 146 points)
The pilot of the Italian team Mooney VR46 Racing Team started the 2022 season with a very clear goal: to get his first podium in the intermediate category. Indeed, after 2021, when he was gathering strength, Celestino Vietti (Mooney VR46 Racing Team) arrived in Qatar eager to continue his progress and pose as a title contender, and he was.
On the international circuit in Lusail, the Transalpine driver won, then second place in Indonesia and another success in Argentina. Those three podiums in a row suggested that Valentino Rossi’s apprentice was about to take off, but the empty result in the USA was a reminder of how demanding it is to perform in the middle category. From then on, the mountain began to get steeper and steeper for Celestino Vietti, who in the next seven GPs only finished twice on the podium and scored two new zeros.
Although he hasn’t hit three points this year, the stars have often aligned in No. 13’s favor to allow him to go into the holiday with the leader status he’s held since the inaugural round.
Augusta Fernandez (2nd place – 146 points)
However, Celestino Vietti won’t be taking it easy during the summer break, because after the Motul TT Assen the Italian now shares the lead with Augusto Fernandez (Red Bull KTM Ajo), who has steadily improved since the start of the season.
After missing the podium in the first races and several unfortunate incidents, the French Grand Prix SHARK was a turning point for the Spaniard who took the win. In the last five races, the Madrid native has finished in the top three four times, including three wins. Those good results saw No. 37 go into mid-season with every chance of winning what would be his first world crown.
Ai Ogura (3rd place, 145 points)
That’s not all! It’s not just any battle between Celestino Vietti and Augusto Fernandez, as Ai Ogura (Idemitsu Honda Team Asia) is just one point behind the duo. Quiet and not the favorite at the start of the year, the Japanese have shown that there is no better ally than consistency.
With one zero point, four podiums, a win and a pole position, the number 79 has become one of the most reliable and promising heroes in the category. It seems that the real fight for the crown will come down to these three, although you need to be vigilant.
Other drivers to look out for
A little further down the rankings and with a slight mathematical chance of making the top three, we find riders like Aron Canet (Flexbox HP40), Tony Arballino (Elf Marc VDS Racing Team) and Joe Roberts (Italtrans Racing Team). All of them are already more than a race away from the lead, but that won’t stop them from showing their best and climbing up the rankings to give us an exciting end to the season.
Other riders can also act as referees, such as Albert Arenas (India GASGAS Aspar Team), who has shown in recent races that he has found his way on a Moto2™ machine, and rookie Pedro Acosta (Red Bull KTM Ajo) who, although absent from Assen due to a fractured left femur, but already has a pole position, a win and a second place to his credit. All this makes the Moto3™ world champion a prime candidate for Rookie of the Year.
He will have no problem taking this honor if other heroes such as Alonso Lopez (MB Conveyors SpeedUp) allow him to do so. The Spaniard, who started the season at Le Mans as a replacement for Romano Fenati, made an excellent debut, although he showed only a small part of his talent. Will he be able to climb the podium before the end of the season?