United Kingdom’s Lewis Cornish and Thailand’s Trakarn Thangthong won the season’s Open International Class and Asian Class of the 2017 FIM Asia SuperMoto Championship respectively. However, home rider Khairi Zakaria stole the limelight with a grand closure to a solid win of Moto 2 this evening.
“This feeling is amazing. It was a tough race especially with Simon, Khairi, Trakarn and Habibullah in the track, but all I have to do is to maintain my pace and I will take the championship title. I will return next season if everything permits,” said Lewis.
Simon took holeshot in Moto 1 with Lewis following closely behind. He crashed on the fourth and eighth lap that made way for Lewis, Trakarn and Khairi to lead the race. However, he redeemed his mistakes on the 22nd lap to once again lead the pack and steal the pole position for Moto 2.
“The weather was too hot and I lost focus after every mistake. The only thing that went through my mind after I recalibrated my mood was only to win the race. I am really happy with the outcome and hope to remain the same for Moto 2.”
Malaysia’s Khairi Zakaria’s performance was also tempered by the scorching weather in Moto 1 that gave Trakarn a wider lead in the Asian Class chart. “I was disappointed that I made a mistake and fell. I was a little exhausted and dehydrated, but hope that I can reclaim my position in Moto 2.”
On the other hand, Thailand’s Trakarn Thangthong remained calm and consistent throughout the race, but admitted that Simon was a threat when he caught up. “I almost lost my balance because Simon suddenly appeared on my left at one of the tight corners. I was shocked and allowed him pass.”
Lewis vomited the moment he got off his bike after Moto 1. He was seen cooling himself off with a massage to his arms and said that the difficult track strained his muscles. “I was disappointed with my performance in Moto 1. I will do better in the final race this season and ensure my Open International Class championship title.”
However, Moto 2 was a show stopper when Simon crashed after taking the holeshot, making way for Khairi and Habibullah to lead the race. The Malaysians worked together because Habibullah knew that his responsibility was for Khairi to win, and blocked Simon and Lewis from pursuing the front-runner for 10 minutes until he crashed. But it was too late for Simon and Lewis to catch-up as they were nearly four seconds behind Khairi.
“I am very happy to wave the Malaysian flag at the closing race today. It was difficult because I could still feel the pain from the accumulated injury throughout the race, but I knew what I had to do – to speed for and win the second race.”
Trakarn who fell off from the pack since the first bottleneck corner admitted that he made a few mistakes, but managed to stabilize the situation. He improved his position to the fifth, and won the Asian Class by 8 points ahead of Khairi.
“It was a difficult situation but I cannot complain. I did my best and I am very happy with the results.”
United Kingdom’s Lewis Cornish wins the season’s Open International Class with a total of 212 points while Thailand’s Trakarn Thangthong steals the Asian Class with a total of 211 points. Meanwhile, Malaysia’s Khairi Zakaria holds a total of 181 points and 203 points in the Open International Class and Asian Class respectively.
Top 5 Overall Standing Points – Open International Class
Lewis Cornish – 212 points
Trakarn Thangthong – 187 points
Khairi Zakaria – 181 points
Muhd Habibullah – 127 points
Takashi Sasaki – 118 points
Top 5 Overall Standing Points – Asian Class
Trakarn Thangthong – 211 points
Khairi Zakaria – 203 points
Muhd Habibullah – 147 points
Takashi Sasaki – 136 points
Naoto Takayama – 121 points