As the Moto2 grid gathers at Valencia for the first major test of the year, one of the top favorites for the 2011 championship will be missing. Kenan Sofuoglu was forced to return to Istanbul to see his father, who has fallen critically ill, and has decided to remain in Turkey rather than return to Spain for the Valencia test. The decision was taken in consultation with the team, who declared their full support for Sofuoglu's decision to return to Istanbul in a press release.
Sofuoglu's family is no stranger to tragedy: The 26-year-old lost both his brothers in accidents, his eldest brother Bahattin to a traffic accident, whilst the middle brother Sinan died in a training crash in 2008. Kenan is the last of the brothers, and the most successful of the three.
Sofuoglu is expected to make his return to testing on February 15th, at Estoril, the next opportunity the Moto2 riders get to take to the track.
Below is the text of the press release issued by the Technomag CIP team:
Press Release Preview IRTA Moto2 Test Valencia
Kenan Sofuoglu will miss the IRTA Moto2 Test of Valencia
Alès, 9 February 2011
The day before the official IRTA Moto2 tests, which take place in Valencia till Saturday the 12th of February, the Technomag-CIP team is ready to continue its development program.
Unfortunately, Kenan Sofuoglu has been forced to skip this test, as a result of a medical emergency within his family. His father’s health became critical during the shakedown test in Barcelona on Monday, and Kenan decided with the full support of the entire team to abort the test and fly home to support his parents during this difficult time.
The team immediately decided to cancel the Valencia test for Kenan, and is confident that Dominique can fulfil the test program in Valencia. The thoughts of the whole team are with Kenan and his family in this difficult period, and they hope to welcome Kenan back during the test in Estoril.