Khairul falls behind, but teammate McPhee rakes in points


Gaviota Aspar Team's Spanish rider Albert Arenas (R) leads the pack during the Moto 3 race of the Czech Grand Prix at Masaryk circuit in Brno on August 9, 2020. (Photo by Joe Klamar / AFP)

PETALING JAYA: It was a day of contrasting fortunes for Petronas Sprinta Racing riders Khairul Idham Pawi and John McPhee in the Czech Republic Grand Prix Moto3 race.

After fracturing his small finger on the right hand the previous day, Khairul braved the pain to be on the starting line in Brno but was only able to finish the race in 22nd spot.

It was not good enough to fight for his first championship point of the season but it was still a fighting performance considering that he started the race on 30th after experiencing a high-side during the qualifying session on Saturday.

“I have been improving with every session and seen the lap times getting better and better.

“I was so close to getting into the second qualifying session but I was unlucky to lose the rear and have a high-side in Turn 7. As a result, I had a fracture on one of my fingers of my right hand, the same one I broke last year.

“I didn’t think I could finish the race today. I just tried to finish the race but the pace was not that good.

“I am getting treatment and we’ll see how it goes for the coming race next weekend,” said the 21-year-old from Kampung Gajah in Perak.

His teammate McPhee had a more satisfying end to his weekend, carving his way through from 18th on the starting grid to finish fifth.

The Scotsman collected 11 more points to remain in the title chase with a total of 51 points, just a point behind second placed Ai Ogura of Japan.

Albert Arenas of Spain, who finished second yesterday behind Dennis Foggia of Italy, is on top with 71 points.

McPhee was delighted with how the weekend ended. He sat out the rest of the qualifying session after crashing on his first flying lap on Saturday.

“I started to lose the rear as a consequence and as I tried to get on the throttle, the bike went and I couldn’t save it (on Saturday).

“But we have good pace and good rhythm today. It was a long race and I was sure I can work my way through.

“It’s important to get the points to be in the title fight.”

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