PETALING JAYA: It’s the end of the road for Moto2’s Khairul Idham Pawi who has decided to throw in the towel at just 22 years old.
Khairul, who has been in the MotoGP world championship for five seasons and is still the only Malaysian to take the chequered flag, announced his retirement after enduring a miserable year which was hampered by a finger injury.
He is now back in his hometown in Kampung Gajah, Perak, after ending a two-week quarantine upon his return from Europe after the conclusion of the MotoGP season.
“I’ve been thinking about quitting for quite some time. I also talked about it with my family and I’ve decided to help out with the family business, ” said Khairul, whose father is involved in rearing cows.
Khairul, or Super KIP to his fans, has been struggling with injuries for the past few seasons which ultimately saw his contract with Petronas Sprinta Racing terminated.
“Obviously, there is some disappointment but I’m proud to become the first Malaysian to win two races in the world championship.
“Right now, I want to forget about racing and do things which will make me happy. I want to help my family as they have sacrificed a lot during my career, ” said Khairul.
The soft-spoken rider made headlines when as a Moto3 rookie in 2016, he won the Argentina and German Grands Prix with Honda Team Asia.
He was duly promoted to Moto2 in 2017 which some believed was premature and Khairul struggled to make any headway.
Petronas Sprinta then signed him up in 2019 but a crash halfway in the season forced him to go for multiple surgeries on his right hand finger.
In a bid to revive his career, Khairul returned to Moto3 this year but continued to struggle and is still bugged by his old finger injury which later had to be amputated.