PETALING JAYA: Hafizh Syahrin put up an awesome ride to become the first-ever Malaysian rider to triumph on American soil, claiming victory in Race 2 of the AMA Pro Harley-Davidson Series at the Indianapolis circuit on Sunday.
Hafizh, who had taken his first podium with a strong third place finish in Race 1 the day before, made another big step forward to pass local favourite Steve Rapp on the final lap to take the chequered flag by just 0.060 seconds.
The 17-year-old showcased his adaptability throughout the weekend at the famed Brickyard track with 65,000 spectators watching. He adapted fast to the unfamiliar Harley-Davidson XR1200 machinery.
Nicknamed “The Fish” during his time racing in Spain, Hafizh led his home Grand Prix at Sepang en route to a fourth-place result in the Moto2 world championship race last season.
He said he never expected to achieve an outcome like this.
“I took part to gain experience racing on different tracks before I move up to the Moto2 world championship next year.
“I was pretty confident today before the start as the more laps I have, the better understanding I have with this Harley.
“It is not easy as it’s a heavy machine but I am glad everything worked out so well this weekend.
“We found a very good setting in the first race and then we tried to improve the rear suspension just a little bit for today’s race because yesterday I had a bit too much slide.
“It improved a lot and that’s why I was able to run up front.
“Steve Rapp and I were the only two in the front and I kept in the second position until the very end.
“I passed him in the slipstream.
“I am very happy to come away with a first place and third places this weekend,” said the Petronas-backed rider, who will return to Barcelona after this to resume his campaign in the CEV Spanish Championships.