MV Agusta bring new bike for 2022 WorldSSP campaign as the F3 800 RR makes its debut

Monday, 28 March 2022 09:07 GMT

The Italian manufacturer will compete in 2022 with the F3 800 RR machine as the technical rules open up for more bikes

The new ruleset for the 2022 FIM Supersport World Championship allows more bikes into the category and has enticed manufacturers to return or bring in new machines. Ducati’s return has been well documented but one manufacturer remaining in the Championship and bringing a new machine is MV Agusta. Having raced in 2021 with the F3 675, the one team running with MV Agusta will have the F3 800 RR at their disposal in 2022.

MV Agusta Reparto Corse are the sole team running MV Agusta machinery in WorldSSP and, last year, featured only a one-bike effort with Niki Tuuli hoping to lead the team to glory. The Finnish rider scored three podiums on his way to 11th in the Championship with the Italian brand finishing last of the full-season manufacturers.

For 2022, the number of bikes has doubled as the team takes on two F3 800 RR machines. Tuuli remains with the team and he will be joined by up-and-coming talent Bahattin Sofuoglu, the nephew of five-time WorldSSP Champion Kenan Sofuoglu. The younger Sofuoglu will compete in the WorldSSP Challenge in 2022 for his maiden season in WorldSSP after making the step up from WorldSSP300.

The team have completed several tests throughout the 2022 off-season, coming at the Circuito de Jerez – Angel Nieto and Misano World Circuit “Marco Simoncelli”. During the second test at Jerez, in January, Tuuli gave his thoughts on the new bike, which features the same chassis as the F3 675 but a three-cylinder, 800cc engine.

Tuuli believes the new engine will help him throughout the season He said: “MV brought a new engine, the 800 and some improvements for it. The first day was learning the new engine and learning the new riding style. In the end, on the second day, we tried to improve some things that we were missing last season. I think we did a really good job. I’m enjoying the riding. I’m so happy the new engine fits my riding style really well.

“The engine is, let’s say, the top speed and acceleration, in general, is quite similar compared to the 675. The big difference is that I don’t need to ride at a risk level, that I did last year. The last turning and the first time exit is the big difference. You can turn the bike better and then exit. Last year, I needed to use too much lean angle and try to open. That’s why I was crashing last year. Now, I think, we will fix this problem.”

Andrea Quadranti, Team Manager of MV Agusta Reparto Corse, spoke at the Misano test about the upcoming 2022 season, his hopes and goals for the campaign and what to expect from riders Tuuli and Sofuoglu. In 2022, Tuuli will work with a new crew as he and the team look to get the best out of their package.

Quadranti said: “Bahattin needs to just spend time on the bike. He’s making the jump from 300cc to 800cc. It’s a totally different style. The F3 is not a very easy bike to ride and he needs time. He doesn’t have a lot of pressure. He’s doing the European championship. He will learn and he will come out during the season and improve. Niki knows the bike and knows what he wants on the bike to be faster. We need first to finetune the electronics and then we can work. He has a new crew. Everybody needs to get to know each other.”

At the second Jerez test, Bahattin Sofuoglu was unable to take part in the test for MV Agusta after a positive COVID-19 test. The team were still able to utilise the Sofuoglu name throughout the test as Kenan, present at the test with Can Öncü (Kawasaki Puccetti Racing), jumped on the bike and used his experience to give feedback to the team.

Explaining his impressions of the F3 800 RR, Kenan said: “I taught my experience to them in some areas. It’s a hard bike to ride, but if you understand it, it’s a potential winning bike. I think I’m very happy for Bahattin because he will be on the bike during the season. For him, it is a hard bike to ride but if he’s doing well, to move to WorldSBK, this is one of the best choices for Bahattin.”

The 2022 season will be an intriguing prospect for MV Agusta. A new bike that helps one rider who has experience of the 2021 machine, a new line-up featuring a WorldSSP rookie and feedback from a five-time World Champion after he was unexpectedly testing for the team, could 2022 be the season MV Agusta stands on the top step of the podium for the first time since 2017?

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