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Asia Road Racing Championship

Information on Yamaha riders, machines and more in the Asia Road Racing Championship

Rd.05 October 2 India


■Race: 2016 Asia Road Racing Championship Rd. 05
■Category: SS600/AP250
■Location: Buddh International Circuit, India

Race 1
SS600 Class
■Date: October 1, 2016
■Race Condition: Dry
■Laps:13 (65 km)
■PP: Anthony Keith West(1'55.528/Yamaha)
■FL: Anthony Keith West(1'55.912/Yamaha)
AP250 Class
■Laps:9 (45 km)
■PP: Apiwat Wongthananon (2'15.005/Yamaha)
■FL: Peerapong Loiboonpeng (2'16.051/Yamaha)

Race 2
SS600 Class
■Date: October 2, 2016
■Race Condition: Dry
■Laps:16 (80 km)
■PP: Anthony Keith West(1'55.528/Yamaha)
■FL: Anthony Keith West(1'55.855/Yamaha)
AP250 Class
■Laps:9 (45 km)
■PP: Apiwat Wongthananon (2'15.005/Yamaha)
■FL: Peerapong Loiboonpeng (2'16.223/Yamaha)


SS600: West and the YZF-R6 Take Double Race Victories
AP250: Wongthananon Wins Both Races to Secure Title before Final Round

In the SuperSports 600 (SS600) class, the Akeno Speed WJR Racing Team's Anthony Keith West (#13) took victory in both Race 1 and Race 2, while the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team's Decha Kraisart (#24) finished behind West in 2nd in both races, the two riders demonstrating the strong capabilities of the YZF-R6. Meanwhile in the Asia Production 250 (AP250) class, Apiwat Wongthananon (#24) of the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team scored a double win and secured both the Rider and Team championship titles.

Race 1 (SS600)
The Akeno Speed WJR Racing Team's Anthony Keith West (#13) brought Yamaha its first victory in the class since Decha Kraisart (#24) of the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team won Race 1 at Round 3 in Japan. Qualifying and Race 1 were held on the second day of the race weekend, and the Yamaha Racing Team's Yuki Ito (#76)--who was making his return after an injury--qualified in 11th. Though he was 1.3 seconds off of the pole-setting time, the gap to 5th place was a mere 0.38 seconds. His teammate, Md Fitri Ashraff Razali (#12), had a crash in the first free practice session and was unable to take part any further. This had an effect on his qualifying and he would start from 18th position. Pole position went to West, who adapted quickly to the Indian circuit that was newly added to the ARRC calendar this season. In addition, Kraisart was in good form from taking a 3rd place podium finish in the ST600 class race at the All Japan Road Race Championship round held in September, and qualified in 2nd to make it two Yamaha riders on the front row.
Once the race started, West and Kraisart maintained their good form and were running 1-2 at the front, but the race was red-flagged and had to be restarted due to a sudden on-track accident. However, the pair's charge would not be deterred; they once again were running 1-2 at the front after the race restart. West had been improving his pace throughout the weekend and slowly began to pull away from his pursuers. By the middle of the race, he was running on his own and continued to ride in a safe, controlled manner to take the checkered flag and his first win of the season.
Meanwhile, the battle for 2nd position was heating up. Kraisart fell into the clutches of the trailing group and got into a close-quarters duel with Kawasaki's Ahmad Yudhistira (#33). Yudhistira managed to get in front of Kraisart several times. But as the race wound down, the Thai rider managed to reclaim 2nd position and didn't allow Yudhistira a chance to retaliate, crossing the line in 2nd and making it a 1-2 finish for the YZF-R6.
Ito got a good start and moved up from his grid position by four places into 7th by the end of the first lap before the unfortunate red flag. In the restarted race, he made a slight mistake at the start which cost him positions, after which he found it difficult to get up to speed and languished where he was. However, in the latter half of the race he made a charge and was able to come back to take 9th place in his return to the championship. Razali improved on his qualifying positon by three, taking the checkers in 15th.

Race 2 (SS600)
Just as in Race 1, Race 2 became a duel between West (#13) and Kraisart (#24) for the win. Kraisart got the holeshot from 2nd on the grid but was soon overtaken for the lead by West. Kraisart once again took the lead on lap 2, and West lost 2nd position to Kawasaki's Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman (#25) on lap 3. West quickly recovered on the next lap by retaking 2nd and settled in to chase Kraisart, who was 0.2 to 0.3 seconds ahead. After West reclaimed the lead on lap 5, the two YZF-R6s pulled out a big gap during the middle stages of the race as they controlled the pace at the front. West managed to keep Kraisart at bay, though the Thai rider had at one point closed to within 0.19 seconds of him. He eventually came across the finish line with a 3-second lead to complete a double victory in India. Kraisart took 2nd and made it a 1-2 finish for the YZF-R6 in both races.
Kraisart's teammate Anucha Narkcharoensri (#14) gradually faded back during the race, ending up in 5th behind Kamaruzaman and Honda's Yuki Takahashi (#1). Aiming for the podium, Narkcharoensri passed Takahashi on the final lap but just missed out with a 4th place finish.
Ito (#76), who had started from 11th on the grid, improved his position on each of the opening two laps to slot into 9th, where he stayed until the checkered flag. Razali (#12) finished in 14th.

Race 1 (AP250)
At this round in India, eyes were on the growth of the riders who had attended the second holding of The Master Camp in mid-September, a training program put on by Yamaha and the VR46 Riders Academy with the goal of developing young riding talent. Apiwat Wongthananon (#24) of the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team had won six of the eight races this season across four rounds and also participated in The Master Camp for the first time, and with this being his chance to secure the championship title, he was at the center of attention.
Wongthananon took pole position in qualifying while his teammate, Anupab Sarmoon (#500), took 2nd. Galang Hendra Pratama (#99) on the Yamaha Racing Indonesia team, who also took part in The Master Camp, completed a front row made up entirely of YZF-R25 riders with 3rd position before Race 1 got underway the same day.
However, the race was similar to many seen before it as some 10 machines formed a large group at the front. Many riders were able to improve their lap times by taking advantage of slipstreaming down the long straights. Among them were Wongthananon and Sarmoon, along with main rival, TRICKSTAR Racing's Takehiro Yamamoto (#1). The three stayed near the front as riders swapped positions on every lap--and sometimes in every corner--during the course of the race.
The major turning point came towards the end of the race. With two laps remaining, Wongthananon and Sarmoon formed a two-rider group and quickly pulled away from their rivals, resulting in win number seven for Wongthananon and Sarmoon's third podium of the season. Once again, it was a display of the YZF-R25's incredible performance. With this result, the gap between points leader Wongthananon and Yamamoto in 2nd in the standings was increased to 47 points. Wongthananon had the chance to take the championship title in Race 2.
The results of the remaining Master Camp attendees were Pratama in 5th, Soichiro Minamimoto (#22) of the Akeno Speed WJR Racing Team in 7th, Imanuel Putra Pratna (#96) of the Yamaha Racing Indonesia team in 9th, Peerapong Loiboonpeng (#14) of the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team in 12th and Kasma Daniel Kasmayudin (#127) of the Yamaha Finson Racing team in 13th position.

Race 2 (AP250)
A huge, roughly 10-bike lead group formed just as it had in Race 1, and another close-quarters battle ensued with the fastest riders rapidly swapping positions on each lap. Wongthananon (#24) was once again in top form and made a rocket start from pole position. He and his teammate Sarmoon (#500) consistently ran near the front. Though he relinquished the lead to Pratama (#99) in the closing stages, Wongthananon made a pass back on the long straight on the final lap and took brief looks over his shoulder to check that he had opened up enough of a gap, showing his strong composure as he came across the line to take the checkered flag. With Yamamoto (#1) retiring on lap 5, Wongthananon not only took his eighth win of the season but also claimed the 2016 AP250 class championship title before the final round. Pratama lost one position at the end to take 3rd on the podium while Sarmoon overshot a corner with three laps remaining and finished 5th. Of the Master Camp participants, Loiboonpeng (#14) took 6th place with Kasmayudin (#127) behind him in 7th. Pratna (#96) finished in 10th, while Minamimoto (#22) had an issue with his machine and was forced to retire from the race. The final round of the ARRC will take place between December 3 and 4 at the same venue as Round 2, the Chang International Circuit in Thailand.

SS600 RESULT Race.1

SS600 RESULT Race.2


AP250 RESULT Race.1

AP250 RESULT Race.2




Yamaha Racing Team
Yuki Ito (9th/9th)

"We had some machine trouble during free practice, so I couldn't find the best setup or get into a good rhythm, and that's how we ended the races as well. The circuit in Buriram for the next event in Thailand is a place where I've won before, but at Round 2 this season I wasn't able to win again so I'd like to get a great result there to make up for it. I'll do my best, so please keep an eye out for me at the next round."

Md Fitri Ashraff Razali (15th/14th)

"I couldn't ride the way I wanted to in either race, but I was glad to at least be able to take some points. I was also able to set a time quick enough to meet my goal for the weekend, and I'll be putting my effort towards doing it again at the next round in Thailand."

Michael Chai, Team Manager, Motorsports Development

"Ito's didn't finish in a position we can be satisfied with. He's a rider who has a lot of skill, so if he's able to match that with the mental aspect and machine setup side of things, he should be able to move further up the order. Our team will come together and put forth a concerted effort to support him in moving in that direction. Razali had a fall in the first free practice session and it seemed like he couldn't quite recover and get up to speed. He then finished out the weekend in that situation. He was able to take one series point though, which was a positive. Please continue to support our team as we prepare for the final round of the season."

Akeno Speed WJR Racing Team
Anthony Keith West (1st/1st)

"I was really thrilled to do the double here. The tracks and machines so far in the ARRC haven't quite jelled with me which made it difficult to win, so these results are even sweeter. But this circuit in India has a layout similar to European-style tracks, so we were able to get a really good machine setup and go for the win. With Decha finishing 2nd in both races I think it's easy to see, but this weekend the Yamahas were just really fast. I want to say thank you to everyone on my team who worked really hard and to Yamaha."

Yamaha Thailand Racing Team
Decha Kraisart (2nd/2nd)

"My bike was in really good condition this weekend and I was happy to have a great battle with West. The team always does a really good job, so I think we're in with a strong chance of winning at my home round at Buriram in Thailand."


Yamaha Thailand Racing Team
Apiwat Wongthananon (1st/1st)

"I'm really happy to win the championship. I've been waiting a very long time for this day, ever since I started racing. I'm grateful from the bottom of my heart to Yamaha, all of my sponsors and all the people who have supported me. I barely missed out on the title last year, so I wanted to win it this year no matter what. I've finally done it, so I couldn't be happier."

Theerapong Opaskornkul, Senior General Manager of Sales & Marketing Support

"For the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team, the races at this round were essentially perfect, especially because we took the Rider and Team championship titles in the AP250 class. I think this is the result of the team and riders consistently taking on challenges with a 'never give up' mentality. We've had a tailwind at our backs throughout the season, but I think it was created by our team's hard work and determination. Thanks to that, we were able to lift the title before the final round of the season after only five rounds and 10 races. "In the SS600 class, Kraisart took 2nd place podium finishes in both races. He also took 2nd place in the All Japan Road Race Championship's seventh round in Okayama a week earlier. I think this just proves how steady and fast he is as a rider. "I think Narkcharoensri has also made a lot of progress this season. If you remember back to last season in the SS600 class, he couldn't break into the top positions at all. But this year the riders, mechanics and team staff have all grown and become a team that is consistently able to challenge at the front. "The next and final round at Buriram is a home race for us. I think we'll be able to show the Thai fans just how much we've improved as a team. I'm extremely grateful to all of our sponsors who have supported us, to Yamaha, and to everyone involved with our team. Thank you very much."