SEPANG: Rider Mohd Izzat Zaidi Mohd Salehan made an impressive start with a new lap record as the season opener of the Petronas Malaysian Cub Prix Championship got under way at the Sepang International Circuit.
The Ipone Yamaha YY Pang Racing Team rider found a way to get past the rpm limitation rules to clock a stunning 1:15.190 in the CP150 category at the 2.6km Sepang South Track yesterday.
He erased the previous record of 1:15.240 held by Azroy Hakeem Anuar of Honda Yuzy Idemitsu Racing set last year en route to a runner-up finish in the premier class of the championship.
The championship organisers previously announced new regulations whereby all motorcycle makes in the CP150 class would be limited to a maximum of 14,000rpm.
“The result came as a bit of a shock to me honestly. Like all the other riders on the grid, I am still looking for the best racing line and riding style to adjust to the new rpm limits, ” said Izzat, who is from Penang.
“This lap record has given myself and the entire team a strong morale boost as we prepare for the pole and first race of the season tomorrow, ” he added.
It will be a mean fight up front today as Azroy trailed in as the second fastest rider in the CP150 class with 1:15.409 while CP150 defending champion Mohd Helmi Azman of SCK Honda Racing Team was third fastest with 1:15.423.
Comeback kid Kasma Daniel Kasmayuddin was still getting back into the rhythm of underbone racing.
The Petronas Sprinta Yamaha Maju Motor rider is a three-time Cub Prix champion but spent the last three years racing in Europe before having to make his way back after his team encountered difficulty raising sponsorship for the 2021 season.
Kasma failed to make the cut for the top 10 when he clocked 14th fastest time in qualifying with 1:16.240.
In the CP125 qualifying session, ONEXOX TKKR Racing Team’s Mohd Hafiza Rofa took top honours with 1:32.306.
However, it was Siti Norafizah Mohamad from new racing outfit Tuneboss Pink Racing who stole the limelight by finishing second fastest in the class with 1:33.005.
CP150: 1. Mohd Izzat Zaidi Mohd Salehan (Yamaha) Ipone Yamaha YY Pang Racing Team 1:15.190,2. Azroy Hakeem Anuar (Honda) Honda Yuzy Idemitsu Team 1:15.409,3. Mohd Helmi Azman (Honda) SCK Honda Racing Team 1:15.423,4. Mohd Affendi Rosli (Yamaha) Petronas Sprinta Yamaha-CKJ Racing) 1:15.485,5. Mohd Izam Ikmal (Honda) SCK Honda Racing Team 1:15.658.
CP125: 1. Mohd Hafiza Rofa (Yamaha) ONEXOX TKKR Racing Team 1:32.306,2. Siti Norafizah Mohamad (Yamaha) Tuneboss Pink Racing 1:33.005,3. Mohd Haziq Mohd Hamdan (Honda) MOTO1 Koyoko Honda KC Racing Team 1:33.150,4. Mohd Syafiq Rosli (Yamaha) Petronas Sprinta Yamaha Maju Motor 1:33.463,5. Mohd Adib Rosley (Yamaha) Ipone Yamaha YY Pang Racing Team 1:33.555.
WIRA KBS: 1. Mohd Syamil Amsyar Iffende (Yamaha) Petronas Sprinta Yamaha 31 Racing) 1:34.222,2. Mohd Aqil Danial Nasrul (Yamaha) Petronas Sprinta Yamaha 31 Racing) 1:35.531,3. Mohd Harith Haziq Zamri (Honda) Castrol Power1 Honda Team 1:36.269,4. Mohd Harith Rosmaza (Yamaha) 1:36.712,5. Danial Johan (Yamaha) Petronas Sprinta Yamaha 31 Racing 1:36.839.