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HONDA continues success for ARRC season in Japan for round 3

Opening

Honda supremely reigned the podium in home ground Sepang for Round 2 last time out. Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA’s Zaqhwan Zaidi is looking forward once again to finishing on the podium in both races for the upcoming ARRC Round 3 in Sugo International Racing Course, Japan for the ASB1000 category as he managed to finish 4th and 2nd for Round 1 and Round 2 respectively in Sepang.

Helmi Azman of Boon Siew Honda Racing Team had a memorable homecoming last time out, he secured 4th place in Race 1 and then won Race 2. Helmi is now leading with 83 points in terms of overall points for the SS600 category and will be looking ahead to further extend the gap at the summit in terms of the overall point and continue his good run of form.

Fellow national compatriots and teammates of the Boon Siew Honda Racing Team, Azroy Hakeem and Khairul Idham Pawi, will be looking forward to following suit and finishing strong once again for Round 3 in Sugo International Racing Course. Azroy Hakeem manages to grab podium place in 3rd for Race 1 and finished 8th place for Race 2 in Sepang. Meanwhile, Khairul Idham Pawi had an impressive run at home ground return for the ARRC as he managed to secure the podium for both Races finishing 2nd and 3rd for Race 1 and Race 2 respectively.

Also competing in the AP250 category is Mohd Idlan Haqimi of Idemitsu Boon Siew Honda Racing Team.

Qualifying

Sugo provided a challenging environment for all the riders. The weather was clear but not a dry one as the drizzle there where rained drizzly and riders had more analyzing to do in terms of tire settings. However, Zaqhwan manage to secure 3rd grid with the best lap timing of 1:28.600s he did in lap 12. He was not far from 2nd grid for the ASB1000 category. Nonetheless, it was a great achievement for the Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA prodigy rider in a challenging track and weather in Sugo.

Azroy Hakeem and Helmi Azman of Boon Siew HONDA Racing Team managed to secure 5th and 6th positions on the grid in the SS600 category. Both clock in their best time at lap 13 with 1:31.659s and 1:31.720s respectively. The formation and chemistry shown on the track are nonetheless very excellent.

Teammate Khairul Idham obtains 13 grid. Helmi had a good pace solo with old front and new rear tires. Teammates Khairul Idham and Azroy manage to clock in an impressive 2:09.438s and 2:09.602s respectively, which put them in 2nd and 3rd grid respectively after changing to new qualifying tires midway through the session.

Meanwhile, Idlan Haqimi and Firdaus Hamdan of Idemitsu Boon Siew Honda Racing Team who challenged the AP250 category managed to finish grid 13th and 18th respectively.

Race 1

It was a very gloomy day during the start of Race 1 at Sugo International Racing Course, track conditions were wet due to drizzles of rain that occurred. The riders face uphill tasks where they need to stay shard and focus on terms of physicality and mental. Lap numbers were reduced from initially 18 laps to 10 laps due to a red flag.

Though, for Zaqhwan, he managed to create a heated atmosphere and put up a good performance. He secured the podium by obtaining 2nd place. He trailed the leading rider since lap 1 but eventually could not keep up and managed to maintain his position when he rose from 4th to 2ndspot for the Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA rider.

In the SS600 category Race 1, Azroy Hakeem manages to preserve 5th place in a challenging and tight battle. Helmi Azman and Khairul Idham respectively finished the race in 11th and 12th position. The gloomy and drizzly weather was quite a challenge for the riders riding the CBR600RR machine as they tried to adapt to the settings of their tyres along with weather conditions.

Pic Source: TWMR

Race 2

Race 2 was identical in terms of weather compared to Race 1. Conditions were wet but this time around most of the riders are starting to familiarize themselves with the challenges and conditions of the Subo International Racing Course. Zaqhwan manage to secure 4th place in the ASB1000 category this time around. He almost secured a podium finish for a second time running but got unlucky during the 18th lap race when he tried to overtake the leading pack in front.

The Boon Siew HONDA Racing Team had a day to remember for the SS600 category in Japan. Azroy Hakeeem and Helmi Azman both secured podium with 2nd and 3rd spots respectively. Azroy Hakeem and Helmi Azman were both in 3rd place and 4th place respectively, took advantage in the final lap when a rider who was in second place at that moment slid off the track and the pair manage to overtake the podium. Safe to say the pair made  a great comeback from the result of Race 1 the day before. Fellow compatriot Khairul Idham Pawi secured a dutiful 9th place for Race 2.

Closing

In general, The Malaysian Honda Riders manage to continue their success and make Malaysia proud so far in this season’s ARRC campaign, especially with some great performances at the Subo International Racing Course in Japan.

The results after Round 3 in terms of the overall points show that Zaqhwan is in 2nd place in the ASB1000 category with 111 points heading into Round 4 which will happen in home ground Sepang in October. He will be looking to get his podium finish in the homecoming race and retain 1st place overall.

In the SS600 category, Helmi still leads overall with 104 points, with a gap of 22 points from 2nd place. He will be expected to finish strong coming Round 4 in Sepang and extend his lead, he is enjoying this ARRC 2022 campaign so far. Khairul Idham has 69 points overall, maintains in 4th while compatriot Azroy has 55 points and is currently in 8th position.

Overall, the Malaysian Riders have waved the Jalur Gemilang very well in Subo International Racing Course, exciting the fans back home with brilliant performances individually and as a team. They have certainly set an exhilarating stage to create an even further intense 4th Round in October in Sepang. Can’t wait for the boys to be back home this time around! Congratulations to Zaqhwan, Helmi, Khairul, and Azroy!

Round Category Team Rider Race 1 Race 2
1 AsiaSuperbike 1000cc Honda Asia-Dream Racing with SHOWA Zaqhwan Zaidi 2nd 4th
1 Super Sports 600cc Boon Siew Honda Racing Team Helmi Azman 11st 3rd
1 Super Sports 600cc Boon Siew Honda Racing Team Khairul Idham Pawi 12th 9th
1 Super Sports 600cc Boon Siew Honda Racing Team Azroy Hakeem Anuar 5th 12th
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