The FIM Asia Road Racing Championship paddock heads to the Losail International Circuit in Qatar this 1st to 3rd October with Yuki Takahashi leading the SuperSports 600cc title chase ahead of compatriots, Tomoyoshi Koyama and Yuki Ito.
Since its addition to the race calendar in 2010, Losail has had the pleasure of hosting the season finale for five consecutive years that saw the crowning of champions, Chalermpol Polamai, Katsuaki Fujiawara, Ryuichi Kiyonari, Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman and Zaqhwan Zaidi.
But for 20th edition of the Asian Championship, the 5.380 kilometre circuit will stage the penultimate round instead, with the final round taking place at the Chang International Circuit in Thailand in December.
This weekend gives Musashi Boon Siew Honda’s Yuki Takahashi the opportunity to strengthen his lead in the SuperSports 600cc title chase following his double win last time out in Thailand.
The Honda-man leads with 127 points and has been the most successful rider overall this season with four victories to his name and he arrives at Losail, a venue he is very familiar with determined to extend his 10-points advantage over Tomoyoshi Koyama (T.Pro Yuzy Honda NTS) who is still hunting for an elusive win.
2014 runner-up, Yuki Ito (PETRONAS Hong Leong Yamaha) is third overall with 91 points hoping to put an end to his roller-coaster season this weekend and bridge the gap with his leading rivals.
Meanwhile stakes are running high in the Asia Production 250cc with the upcoming race marking championship leader, Takehiro Yamamoto’s (Trickstar Racing) first visit to the desert track. The Japanese rider leads the standings with 136 points but has everything to lose with just four points separating him from Apiwat Wongthananon (AP Honda Racing Thailand) who has raced here for the past three seasons.
Adding on to Yamamoto’s dilemma, he will need to fend off Apiwat’s teammate, Nakarin Athiratphuvapat as well who is on a high having bagged a double victory at his home race earlier this month.
As for the Underbone 130cc, defending champion Gupita Kresna (Manual Tech KYT Rextor) will get his first title chance if he can win both races this weekend and if closest title contender, Norizman Ismail (Harian Metro Y-TEQ SCK Honda Racing) finishes lower than third.