This weekend, the sixteenth Grand Prix of the season will be held at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit in Australia. It is regarded by many as one of, if not the best circuit on the calendar because of its beautiful surroundings and spectacular layout. After a disappointing race day in Indonesia, Barry Baltus and Zonta van den Goorbergh are keen to come back stronger this weekend.
The 4.45-kilometre Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit is located in the south of Australia about a two-hour drive from Melbourne. The circuit, with seven left turns and five right turns, is located on the so-called 'Bass Strait', which means it is regularly subject to strong winds. In addition, Phillip Island's weather conditions can also be very changeable, making it important for both the riders and the teams to be sharp at all times.
After Fieten Olie Racing GP finished in the points in India and Japan with Zonta van den Goorbergh and Barry Baltus, a double DNF followed last Sunday in Indonesia. With both riders fit and motivated, everything will be done this weekend to score many points again for the sole Dutch Grand Prix team.
Barry Baltus: “We’re ahead of another race weekend which gives us another opportunity to get back on the bike. I’m in a good mood and I love this place. The track is great and the ambiance is fantastic, I cannot wait to get started on Friday and ride this amazing circuit. Hopefully we can turn the negatives from last weekend into positives.”
Zonta van den Goorbergh: “The second race of this 'Triple header' is already scheduled. We go to Phillip Island this weekend, which is basically a new track for me because last year I didn't get much further than the pit lane exit. It is obviously a very special track that many drivers speak about, it seems to be fantastic to drive there. The location is unique as is the layout where many fast corners run into each other. We'll see how I fare, for now the weather conditions look good but Sunday doesn't seem to be so good. I am going into the weekend feeling good and we will try to make the best of it again."
Jarno Janssen – Fieten Olie Racing GP team manager: “Last Sunday's race weekend in Indonesia obviously did not end the way we would have liked. Zonta in particular was rock solid again all weekend and had the pace to make up some positions from his ninth starting position. Fortunately, he was unscathed by his crash and we can go full steam ahead again this weekend at Phillip Island. For Zonta it is a new track and it will not be easy to find a rhythm on such a fast and flowing track but we now know what he can do.
On Barry's side, the weekend at Mandalika was pretty disappointing and the fact that he couldn't get to the finish line on Sunday made it extra bitter. He's in a situation at the moment where things haven’t been coming naturally for a while so we will have to work on that with the team. We know what Barry is capable of when he is in good form so we will do our best to show that again."
The time difference with Australia is 9 hours. The race weekend at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit begins with two practice sessions on Friday and one practice session on Saturday morning, followed by qualifying on Saturday afternoon at 13:45 local time (04:45 Central European summer time). The 23-lap race will start Sunday afternoon at 12:15 local time (03:15 CEST).