KUALA LUMPUR: SIC Racing Team manager Johan Stigefelt believes the team’s new rider Niki Tuuli has all the right ingredients to be a successful rider in Moto2.
Stigefelt highlighted the Finn's ample experience competing on 600cc bikes in the past and his sheer determination to succeed as key elements necessary to excel.
Tuuli, 22, was signed as a replacement for Zulfahmi Khairuddin who announced his departure from the team last week after a difficult start to the season.
"Niki has great experience (competing) 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 (600cc) Moto2 bike," said Stigefelt.
"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 that this team has.
"He is young and hungry for success while he is also eager to prove himself, so it’s the perfect time and opportunity for him to do this."
Stigefelt assured that the team's crew members were experienced enough to provide Tuuli with a reliable and competitive bike for the upcoming race at Le Mans this weekend.
"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 should be patient.
"At the same time we are experienced enough to give him a good bike almost immediately.
"Let’s see (how he does) at Le Mans, it’s a new track, team and bike for Niki, but I’m hopeful that we can make steady progress throughout the weekend.”
Zulfahmi, who himself was signed as a late replacement for Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah who moved up to the premier class of MotoGP, has resumed his role as head of Sepang International Circuit's ‘Impian ke MotoGP’ talent development programme.