NIKI TUULI JOINS SIC RACING TEAM IN MOTO2
(SIC Racing team press release 14.05.2018)
SIC Racing Team can today announce that Finnish rider Niki Tuuli has joined the Moto2 team and will make his debut on board the 600cc Kalex machine in Le Mans this weekend.
The twenty two year-old from Imatra in Finland, will contest the Moto2 Championship in replace of Zulfahmi Khairuddin, who decided to end his Moto2 career in order to concentrate more on his mentor role within the SIC-backed ‘Impian ke MotoGP’ programme.
Niki Tuuli enters the World Championship with an impressive racing background to date.
Riding minimotos from the age of nine, Niki’s progress led him to ride a 600cc bike for the first time in 2012 in the IDM Yamaha R6 Cup, a competition that he would end up winning.
In 2013 he would make the move up to the European SuperStock600 series, where over the course of three seasons he would claim five podiums and one victory, achieving fourth place overall in 2014 as best result.
2016 was also a noteworthy year for the Finn. After putting his sporting career on the backburner with the disappearance of the European SuperStock600 series and having to undertake mandatory military service in Finland, he participated as a wildcard at three of the final four SuperSport World Championship races, taking the podium in all of them. He also won the Finnish Championship that year.
His brilliant appearances in WorldSSP earned him an opportunity to compete as a full time rider for the 2017 season. Under the tutelage of Vesa Kallio (brother of Mika Kallio), Tuuli took two podiums and one pole position during that year, finishing 7th overall.
In 2018 he has participated in five WorldSSP races (he is currently 8th in the overall standings), before receiving the proposal from SIC Racing Team to start an exciting challenge together in the Moto2 World Championship.
#66 Niki Tuuli
“First of all I want say thanks to SIC Racing Team for this opportunity. I’m really excited and looking forward to this upcoming challenge. Moto2 has been one of my dreams and now it’s a reality. I’ve been riding 600cc bike’s since 2012; the first six years with Yamaha and now this season I’ve been riding with Honda. Obviously Moto2 is different to Supersport but the SIC Racing Team is a good team with lots of experience, so with their help I believe I can adapt well to the Moto2 class. I have only a little experience with Kalex. I got a chance to try it at the end of 2016. I’m now anxiously waiting to ride it again. I know Kalex is excellent, so I’m really thrilled to get this ride. Everything will be new for me at Le Mans, the track, the bike and the team, so I need to go step by step. Now it’s not about any pressure, I just want to learn all the new things properly. Of course I want to do the best result I can and perform as well as possible, but at the same time I need to be patient and focus on adapting to the Moto2 class every lap and every session.”
Johan Stigefelt – Team Manager
“Niki has great experience in the Supersport World Championship and has been riding 600cc bikes for a long time, so we believe that he can adapt well to the Moto2 bike. It’s a big step of course but it’s a great opportunity for him and we will help him all the way with the experience from this team. He is young and hungry and he want’s to prove himself, so it’s the perfect time for him to do this. We are all going to work hard from all aspects and do the best we can. It will probably take a few races before he’s up to speed, but we know that and everyone will be patient for this. At the same time we are experienced enough to give him a good bike immediately. Let’s see at Le Mans; it’s a new track for Niki, team and bike but I’m hopeful that we can make steady progress throughout the weekend.”