The popular 4.445km circuit on the south coast of the Australian mainland returns in the unusual role of the season-closing round, rather than the more recent status as the season opener.
Öncü will be out to continue his strong recent form, having scored five podiums in eight races and a further two in the early rounds. Just a week after the previous round in Indonesia, where Can qualified second and took third place in each of the two races, he is looking to round out his 2022 campaign with his first career WorldSSP victory.
Although still a teenager, Can is a seasoned campaigner now, facing every challenge with his trademark determination and desire to succeed. 2022 is his third season in this competitive class and he will continue with the Kawasaki Puccetti Racing team in 2023.
Montella, a WorldSSP rookie this season but a rider with experience of Phillip Island from his days racing in Moto3, has a personal best race result of fourth so far this year. He has just missed the podium places twice, making his personal aim at the final round of the year securing his first WorldSSP podium finish.
Öncü’s recent strong rides have put him third in the championship with just two individual races left to run. He cannot make it to second place in the final standings this year but he is a relatively comfortable 39 points ahead of the rider in fourth place.
Montella’s up and down learning season has been moving in a generally positive direction, especially after two strong rides in Mandalika which delivered a fifth and sixth place finish to the 22-year old Italian. He is eighth overall in the championship rankings, 17 points behind the rider in front.
There will be a relatively quick return to Phillip Island for the WorldSSP competitors, as the first round of the 2023 season is scheduled to begin at this very circuit between 24-26 February.
Can Öncü, stated: “I’ve scored a lot of podiums this year and this means I’m highly motivated and optimistic ahead of next year, when I’d like to aim for the Supersport title. None of this would be possible if I weren’t part of Manuel Puccetti’s team; he’s like a big brother to me. I’m proud to continue as part of this team and want to do even more in terms of results as of 2023. I know I need to win races and score many podiums to win the title, but this is my dream and my goal.”
Yari Montella, stated: “I have good memories of Phillip Island, a track I raced at a few years ago in Moto3. It’s a difficult but fun and fast track, with a wonderful backdrop. We made further progress at Mandalika and proved to be just a step from the kind of results we set out to achieve. We hope to take that final step forward; I’d really like to round out the season with a podium.”
Adrian Huertas (MTM Kawasaki) will be back and looking to have a personal best race finish in his rookie season. Another first year WorldSSP rider, Tom Booth-Amos (Prodina Racing Kawasaki), had his two best rides of the year last weekend, with a brace of 11th places.