Saturday, July 31, 2010

It can't get any hotter in Sepang

Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman, 2008 Supersports Category Champion, of the PETRONAS Yamaha team tops the qualifying sheets in the Supersports Championship at the round 2 of the Malaysian Super Series at Sepang International Circuit today by clocking 2 minutes 14.629 seconds round the 5.543-kilometre track.

Azlan made himself clear that his advantage was his experience and knowledge of the track that paid off with not only qualifying first on the grid, but it was his best personal lap round the track.

"I, myself, was suprised. I am happy with the performance of the bike and the hot and dry weather really suited us well.", he added.

His rivalry teammate, Zamri Baba, clocked 2 minutes 15.003 seconds, and they would be sharing the front row of the starting grid tomorrow with Walairot Rathapong and Suhatchai Cheamsap, who both clocked 2 minutes 15.247 seconds and 2 minutes 16.311 seconds respectively.

Suhadi Ali Rahmat, only managed to clock fifth fastest, to start on the second row of the grid tomorrow.

The defending champion in the Superbikes Category, Japanese, Yasuhiro Kuhara, of Team HKL Racing, proved yet again in the qualifying session today that he is the best rider to beat with a fastest lap of 2 minutes 14.174 seconds.

Kuhara will start the Superbikes Category of the Malaysian Super Series tomorrow from the front row of the grid with Abdul Rahim Sidek, Mohd Syahnas and Ahmad Azhar completing the top four qualifiers.

The round 4 of the Malaysian Super Series will start at 0900hrs to be held at the Sepang International Circuit. Apart from the bikes competition, fans would also get the opportunity to catch actions in the ATCS, Macau N2000 Series, Macau Roadsports Challenge and the PETRONAS Formula Xperience races tomorrow.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Suhadi aims for Moto2 wildcard

Mohamad Suhadi Ali Rahmat, the 2009 Malaysian Super Series Superstock Champion is all out for this year's championship to grab the Moto2 wildcard ticket for the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix offered by the Sepang International Circuit.

Suhadi, was delighted with his team who as well, are making this a priority. With Idemitsu Honda Racing team's support, he looks all set for the win this weekend after winning the first round.

Mohamad Suhadi started biking in his teenage days in Motocross, winning the national championship at the age of 16. He successfully delivered the 125cc Wildcard programme in last year's race, helping out Mohd Zulfahmi Khairuddin realising his dream to compete in the World 125cc MotoGP championship this season.

Efforts are being made by Sepang International Circuit working closely with Dorna to carry the similar Wildcard Programme for the 2011 Moto2 Championship. Candidates for the Malaysian Moto2 Wildcard Programme would be selected from the Malaysian Super Series' Supersports Championship with the top three riders to be put in a comprehensive selection programme.

Suhadi added that the championship this year is very competitive, with the Thai riders, riding pretty fast as well.

"Its good that there are now opportunities for local riders to move forward and test their skills in the international arena. I congratulate SIC for offering this opportunity to dream of competing in Moto2.", he added.

Apart from the second round of the biking competitions, this weekend's race event will also feature the ATCS, Malaysian Touring Car Challenge, Macau N2000, Macau Roadsports Challenge and the single seater PETRONAS Formula Xperience.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Sixth victory for Lorenzo

Jorge Lorenzo dominated the race at the Grand Prix of USA held at the Laguna Seca Speedway yesterday starting from pole position, although losing ground at start, snatched the chequered flag to finish first, which accounts to a total of six GP victories this season.

His teammate Valentino Rossi, made a triumphant return to the podium just seven weeks after being breaking his leg, overhauling Andrea Dovizioso during a thrilling last ten laps of the race, to finish third.

Lorenzo lost ground at the start of the race for the first few laps, lapping third behind Pedrosa and Stoner. By the sixth lap, he managed to snatch second place when Stoner ran wide and continue to pressure Pedrosa, his fellow Spaniard.

Pedrosa crashed out and left Lorenzo in the lead and from then on, it was smooth sailing for Lorenzo till the finish line. Lorenzo was very happy to win the race in US Soil as this victory is his 11th in MotoGP, his 32nd in all classes and his 10th successful podium.

"I am really looking forward to some time to relax now after two very busy months. Thanks to everyone in my team for doing a brilliant job.", he added.

Meanwhile, his teammate Valentino Rossi had suffered all weekend with pain in both his leg and his shoulder. Once Pedrosa has crashed out of the race, Rossi's fighting instinct kicked in as he spied a podium possibility. In fourth, he gradually closed down the gap with Dovizioso, and with just six laps remaining, he was already within striking distance.

"When I saw Pedrosa on the gravel, I just had to try to catch Dovizioso! I just pushed as hard as I could for a few laps and that brought me closer to him and then I couldn't give up, somehow I caught him and it was a great feeling to pass him to take third.", Valentino Rossi, during the post race interview.

Rossi added that he is thankful that everyone around him has helped him gained back into form and back on the podium. He is happy that there will be some time off for the next race in Brno, just so that he can work on regaining his physical fitness in time.

Source: Fiat Yamaha Team

Keihin HSV-010 wins at SUGO GT300km Race

The round 5 of the 2010 Autobacs Super GT was a 300-kilometre race which took place at the 3.704-kilometre Sportsland SUGO Circuit. The cars completed a total 81-laps of the circuit to round up the 300-kilometre battle.

Pole sitter, Benoit Treluyer of the MOTUL Autech GT-R had a great start and continued to open up a gap over the rest of the pack to 15-seconds at one point. The second half of the race was driven by Benoit's teammate, Satoshi Motoyama, who continued to hold the lead with a difference of 6-seconds, what looked like a victory for the MOTUL Autech GT-R.

Unfortunate for the GT-R, as the car came to a halt at the last corner of the circuit with just 8-laps remaining, due to a developed electrical problem.

With Motoyama out of the race, the battle for the win was between the two Honda HSV-010 GT cars, with Takashi Kogure in his Weider HSV-010 and Koudai Tsukakoshi in the KEIHIN HSV-010. The battle was head-to-head till the last corner of the last lap, when Tsukakoshi brought his HSV-010 even with Kogure from the outside and then nosed ahead just as they crossed the chequered flag.

Tsukakoshi managed to snatch the win over Kogure with just 0.025-seconds apart from each other as the crossed the finish line.

Tsukakoshi, who was still in disbelief during the post race interview, was very happy with the win and felt that the achievement was just luck.

"I think I was just very lucky. As a team, we have confidence that we can run good races, now all we need to work on is getting a better qualifying position. Then, I will try my best to go for a second win in the next round.", he added.

In the GT-300 class, the Apple K-ONE Shiden driven by Hiroki Katoh and Hiroshi Hamaguchi started from pole position and never gave up the lead all the way to the chequered flag.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Lorenzo's Firth Pole

Jorge Lorenzo secures an impressive fifth consecutive pole at Laguna Seca, USA, the 40th of his career across all classes, while his recovering team-mate Valentino Rossi, continues to struggle a little with his current physical condition, to settle for sixth.

Lorenzo, who was also the pole-sitter in last year's race was very happy with his results and securing his fifth pole. He did not expect this pole position this year, as Casey Stoner was also fast at Laguna Seca, who is second fastest in the qualifying session.

He added that he looks forward to the race at Laguna Seca as it is always a special race here with a great atmosphere.

Laguna Seca is a much more technical circuit than Sachsenring, making it less forgiving for Valentino Rossi this weekend. Rossi was physically challenged around the 3.610-kilometre track.

Rossi expressed that his team members and himself will need to improve the bike settings to get closer to the pack leaders in tomorrow's race. He admitted that the track was much difficult than Sachsenring as the demanding corners and hard braking areas is very technical and physically challenging.

"My leg feels better than yesterday, which is good, the problem today is the shoulder because my left one isn't strong enough to compensate completely for the lack of power in my right one and now I have some pain in both!", he added.

Casey Stoner and Andrea Dovizioso will start the race alongside Lorenzo, completing the front row of the grid, while Dani Pedrosa and Ben Spies, who qualified fourth and fifth fastest respectively completes the second row of the grid with Rossi qualifying sixth fastest.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Fiat Yamaha Unveils Laguna Seca Livery

The Fiat Yamaha unveiled their one-off Laguna Seca livery on Thursday, 22 July 2010, with both Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo present for the unveiling ceremony. This livery celebrates the impending release of the Fiat 500 car in the United States of America and features the faces of 500 fans on the fairing of both bikes.

Fans all over the world were given the chance to submit their photos to be pictured on the fairings of the M1s of Rossi and Lorenzo. In just 30 minutes just after the special site was launched, both the fairings were filled with photos submitted by fans globally.

source: Fiat Yamaha Team

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Rossi makes a Remarkable Comeback

Just six weeks after the crash incident in Mugello, the Valentino Rossi makes a remarkable comeback at the German GP finishing fourth by a mere whisker, with his teammate Jorge Lorenzo finishing second. A red flag after nine laps meant the race was restarted, with Dani Pedrosa eventually taking the win after a 21-lap "second" race.

The race at Sachsenring was thrilling with Valentino Rossi battling Casey Stoner for third placing till the chequered flag. On the final lap of the race, Rossi overtook Stoner, in what looked like a decisive move, but on the final corner, Stoner somehow found a way back through, snatching third place, with Rossi forced to settle for fourth.

Davide Brivio, Vale's team manager, expressed that the race weekend at Sachsenring was totally unexpected. A week ago, the team was still 50-50, whether they will be able to race at the German GP yet turned out to be a great weekend by not only able to finish in the top five, but was competitive to snatch podium.

Valentino Rossi had a great battle with Casey for third, and was very close to the podium, expressing that it was a fantastic result after being missing four races.

"I need some more kilometres to really recover the feeling and feel completely okay with the bike again, but I think I did a great job and this was a very good comeback, better than we could wish for.", he added.

Thirteen riders restarted the race, with Pedrosa passing Lorenzo into turn one. The race restart saw Valentino Rossi again losing some ground but he passed Hayden second time around to retake fifth and set off in pursuit of the leaders. Rossi has always been the one to amaze however and he was soon lapping at the same pace as the leading pack to bring him within striking distance with Stoner.

The remaining six laps of the race was simply breathtaking with superb action and overtaking maneuvers from both Rossi and Stoner.

After finishing second for Lorenzo in Sachsenring, the 23-year-old has now finished in first or second place at every one out of eight rounds this season.

Wilco Zeelenberg, Lorenzo's team manager for the Fiat Yamaha Racing, was delighted when Lorenzo, once again, rode well to bag the 20 valuable championship points.

The championship standings now stands with Lorenzo leading with 185 points, Dani Pedrosa with 138 points in second and Dovizioso third with 102 championship points. Rossi is now sixth in the championship standings behind Hayden and Stoner, with 74 championship points.

Monday, July 19, 2010

A wet Round 3 Race

The Round 3 of the Malaysian Super Series was held at the Sepang International Circuit from 17-18 July 2010 seeing the Macau races being held at the circuit as support races to the main event.

The schedule was packed with action filled events with 7 packed back to back races being held, like the GT3 Asia Series, Malaysian GT (formally known as the GT4 Series), Asian Touring Car Series, Classic Car Championship, Supersixteen Championship Series, Macau Roadsports Challenge and the Macau N2000 Series.

Mok Weng Sun, dominated the GT3 Asia Series in races 1 and 2 in his Porsche, even in the pouring rain during the race 2 held later in the afternoon. Mok Weng Sun, who was skipping the Malaysian GT round focused fully on the GT3 Asia Series, paid out well.

In the Malaysian GT series, two-time Malaysian Super Series Champion, Dilantha Malagamuwa needed little time to understand his Lamborghini LP560 as he blazed through qualifying. Dilantha dominated the race from start in both the races held at the circuit.

The new LP560, which only arrived at the circuit Saturday, directly from Germany, clocked 2'9.588s around the 5.543 kilometre circuit, and the Sri Langkan driver were all smiles at the paddock as he expressed in delight of the performance of his prized possession.

He commented that the car was great and did not have to really push the car to its limit round the track, and the car's entry in the Malaysian GT Series was not the main purpose of the car.

"I am having this car for the Merdeka Millennium Endurance Race (MMER). That's the real battle", he added.

Bertie McCrory in his Lotus 7, took the win for both the races in the Classic Car Championship, while Boy Wong, in his Honda Civic, took both the wins gracefully in the SuperSixteen category as the heavy rain continue to pour on the circuit.

As the heavy rainstorm hit the circuit just before the start of the ATCS, and although the rain had eased off, the race was to start behind the safety car in order to allow the drivers to familiarise themselves and locate the areas of standing water.

A total of four cars did not finish the race, including Belmiro, Kuok Lo Keong and Fahrizal Hasan.

Charles Ng, winner in the ATCS Race 6 of the Round 3 Malaysian Super Series, was happy to win it when he overtook Cheung with just two laps remaining.

"With the wet tyres and lower tyre pressure, we had to take it a little slow. But, I had a great battle with Cheung", he added.

The ATCS race 7 & 8 will continue on 30 July 2010 during the Round 4 of the Malaysian Super Series to be held at the Sepang International Circuit.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Rossi debut return at Sachsenring

The Fiat Yamaha Team has announced that Valentino Rossi is cleared to race at this weekend's race in Sachsenring, six weeks after his accident in Italy.

Rossi was examined by Dr Huber Fischer, the Chief Medical Officer for this event declaring that Rossi is fit enough to complete this weekend's race. Rossi is said to be present at an official press conference at Sachsenring, Germany at 1700 CET today.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Confident at Sachsenring for Zulfahmi

Zulfahmi performed beyond expectations at the Round 6 of the World MotoGP in the 125cc category race held at Catalunya, claiming his first championship point there.

Zulfahmi Khairuddin of Malaysia's AirAsia Sepang International Circuit Racing Team has been advised to maintain his great performance, maintaining his focus without putting unnecessary pressure on himself.

Razlan Razali, SIC Chief Executive Officer, said that the Malaysian youngster should approach the upcoming German Grand Prix held at Sachsenring this weekend maintaining focus and his impressive form as he has done for the previous five rounds.

Zulfahmi will constantly be pressured by the local media and the stakeholders, though, the team has always reminded him to enjoy and relax during every race weekend, it will be difficult for him.

"But having said that, Fahmi is doing well mentally and physically, as we have seen often enough that during practice and qualifying, he crashes a fair bit; but picked himself up, focused and performed well", he added.

Razlan, who first saw Zulfahmi in action during the selection for the 2009 Malaysian GP Wildcard Programme, has only praised for the young Malaysian; saying that he has admired his dedication and commitment to constantly improve himself.

Though his participation in the World MotoGP was still recent, Razlan has expressed that the young Malaysian had provided strong impact to the Malaysian Motorsports.

AirAsia-SIC Team technical director, Alessandro Tognelli said that the point earned by the young rider in Catalunya arrived earlier than they had predicted. He added that there is absolutely no pressure on Fahmi to repeat the similar result in Germany, as his target is to continue learning the tracks, bike and racing strategies.

"I'm confident because Sachsenring is in a way less demanding than Catalunya. Having said that, you never know because every circuit presents a new adventure for Zulfahmi to tackle, but he's doing well.", he added.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Rossi test in Brno

Today, Valentino Rossi completed second day of testing, this time at Brno in Czech Republic, following his first ride at Misano. His tests was to better understand his physical condition following the broken leg he sustained at Mugello five weeks ago.

Valentino Rossi completed 46 laps of the Brno Circuit with a best time of 1'59.135. Following the two positive tests at Brno and Misano, Rossi will now wait for a final medical check on Wednesday before making his final decision about riding at Sachsenrin in Germany.

Rossi's substitute rider, Wataru Yoshikawa, who stood for him at the last round held at Circuit de Catalunya, is travelling to Germany and has been entered as a substitute rider once again.

Valentino was very happy with the test at Brno, as he felt better and more confident compared to the test ride in Misano, though, he felt quite exhausted after a few laps round the track.

" We haven't made the final decision yet, I need to have some more x-rays on Wednesday and then my doctors and I will consider whether I can ride at Sachsenring.", he added.

The Fiat Yamaha Team would like to express their thanks to the Yamaha Italia World Superbike Team for their support and help in providing thier bike for Rossi's tests.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Rossi's first test ride

Valentino Rossi completes his test ride at a private test in Misano, Italy, riding the Yamaha YZF-R1 for the first time since breaking his right leg at Mugello on 5th June 2010. The test was to better understand his physical condition from the recovery.

He rode a total of 26 laps at Misano and recorded a best time of 1'38.200. His initial run was 11 laps at 1830 CET with a best time of 1'41.000, then completing the test with a second run of 15 laps at 1945 CET with a best time of 1'38.200 (unofficial times).

The Itallian has made an excellent recovery so far since breaking his right leg at Mugello. Rossi said that this test will help him better understand how the doctors and him will have to work from here and to see how more or less can he ride the bike.

"The test was positive, because I can at least ride, but there was a lot more to a MotoGP race than to a test like this one.", he added.

Riding the motorcycle will help Valentino and his doctors to plan the next stage of his rehabilitation programme in order that he may return to racing as soon as he feels confident to do so.

Rossi expresses that the Superbike provided by the Yamaha World Superbike Team was good and great fun to ride, and he would love to ride it at Sachsenring in 10 days time.