MV Agusta Reparto Corse will field two F3 800 machines for the ‘next generation’ of WorldSSP with Tuuli remaining in the team while Sofuoglu steps up
Two more riders have been confirmed for the ‘next generation’ of the FIM Supersport World Championship with MV Agusta Reparto Corse announced Finnish rider Niki Tuuli remaining at the team for a second season, while up-and-coming Turkish star Bahattin Sofuoglu will make his WorldSSP debut with the team after being a consistent front runner in WorldSSP300.
Sofuoglu, the nephew of five-time World Supersport Champion Kenan Sofuoglu, brings the famous name back to WorldSSP as he links up with the MV Agusta Reparto Corse outfit for 2022. The Turkish rider tested for the team at Jerez a few days after the 2021 season concluded and will now race for the team in 2022 onboard the MV Agusta F3 800 machine as a new ruleset is introduced.
Sofuoglu made his WorldSSP300 debut in 2018 with a 17th-place finish in Portimao before returning for three races in 2018. The 18-year-old made a full-time switch for the 2020 season and immediately made an impact, winning Race 2 at Jerez and becoming a regular podium contender. After finishing third in 2020, he returned for 2021 and finished sixth in the standings, claiming four podiums and two wins – the same as he did in 2020.
Discussing his move into WorldSSP, Sofuoglu said: "I feel proud of myself to have concluded my experience in the WorldSSP300. I had a great time and I learned a lot. Moving forward, I'm super excited to compete in the WorldSSP Challenge, especially having been given the privilege to be a part of this project with MV Agusta Reparto Corse. In this period, we are working and testing in preparation for my future with the team. I would like to thank the team principal Andrea Quadranti and my mentor Kenan for believing in me and giving me this opportunity. I am determined to do the best I can. Looking forward to a very successful future with MV Agusta."
Sofuoglu will be able to count on the experience of Tuuli in the box as the Finn returns for a second season with the team. Tuuli made his WorldSSP return in 2021 after three years away and claimed three podiums as the sole representative of the team. In total Tuuli has eight WorldSSP podiums and one victory, with the Finn hoping he can add to his win from Magny-Cours in 2017. Prior to WorldSSP, Tuuli competed in STK600 for three seasons and claimed five podiums and one victory.
Tuuli said: “It’s great that MV found trust in me. It’s easy to continue with the familiar brand, and the new bike makes the job even more interesting. The first tests we did felt really good. The new engine will give you what you need for optimising riding. You don't need to push with such a limit in every opening and bend. The engine has more power with low rpm, which makes it easier to ride the bike. It will allow me to use potentially tighter lines and hope it makes it easier to overtake. Various parts were also tested, and I think we can definitely build a really good and competitive package for next year. Now let's wait for the last rules for these new bikes.”
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