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Thursday October 10, 2013 MYT 8:33:00 PM
Thursday October 10, 2013 MYT 8:37:17 PM
by shamshul fitri
The Malaysian riders (from left): Zaqhwan Zaidi, Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah, Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Amirul Hafiq Azmi and Husni Aizat Abdul Malik.
SEPANG: The Malaysian Grand Prix this weekend not only boasts the most number of Malaysians on the grid, but also a record number of 11 South-East Asian riders in total.
The six Malaysian riders – Moto3’s Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Amirul Hafiq Azmi and Husni Aizat Abdul Malik, and Moto2’s Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah, Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman and Zaqhwan Zaidi – will be joined by M. Fadli, Doni Tata Pradita and Rafid Topan Sucipto of Indonesia, and Thailand’s Ratthapark Wilairot and Decha Kraisart.
Besides Doni and Rafid who are racing full season, Fadli is replacing the injured Mike Di Meglio of France from team JiR Moto2. Ratthapark is also a full-season rider with team Thai Honda PTT Gresini while Decha will be riding on a wildcard.
It is interesting to note that all the riders have previously featured in either the Petronas AAM Malaysian Cub Prix Championships or the Asian Road Racing Championships (ARRC).
Azlan, Hafizh, Zaqhwan, Rafid, M. Fadli, Ratthapark and Decha have locked horns before in the ARRC.
Zulfahmi raced in the CP115 class of the Cub Prix while Amirul started out with the Wira class. Husni, meanwhile, was a graduate of the one-make race in the championships.
Ron Hogg, promotions director of Two Wheels Motor Racing which acts as the organiser of Cub Prix and ARRC, said the ability to have 11 South-East Asian riders on the grid at Sepang is a testament to the serious development of both championships.
”While we revel at the number of Asian riders, especially Malaysian riders on the grid this time, we must not forget that the effort to develop the next Zulfahmi of Hafizh should not end here.
”Teams and sponsors are crucial to the development of the sport and they must continue finding talent from the grassroots to have the ultimate objective, which is to have a rider in the MotoGP,” he said.
Tags / Keywords:
motorsport, Malaysian Grand Prix, MotoGP, Zulfahmi Khairuddin, Amirul Hafiq Azmi, Husni Aizat Abdul Malik, Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah, Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman, Zaqhwan Zaidi, M. Fadli, Doni Tata Pradita, Rafid Topan Sucipto, Ratthapark Wilairot, Decha Kraisart
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