Mandalika, Otojatim.com - Once again, the racers from the Astra Honda Racing Team (AHRT) have proven their dominance in the Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) Asia Production 250cc (AP250) class. The first race of this ARRC series took place on Saturday, August 12, 2023, at the Mandalika Circuit in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara.
Since the AP250 class qualification session began, the racing team of PT Astra Honda Motor (AHM) has showcased excellent performance. Herjun Atna Firdaus secured the best time and started the race from the pole position.
Muhammad Kiandra Ramadhipa, who replaced Veda Ega, started from the 6th position, while Rheza Danica Ahrens, who had a fall during the qualification session, began the race from the 7th position.
Herjun displayed an impressive performance as soon as the lights turned on. He immediately joined the leading group and managed to lead the first race, which lasted for 10 laps.
Although briefly at the 4th position in the second lap, Herjun managed to overcome competitors and finished at the finish line, securing the top podium position. Other AHRT racers, Rheza and Ramadhipa, also showed competitive performance.
Rheza, initially at the tenth position, competently competed with the front group and even moved up to the second position. Despite a narrow time difference, Rheza eventually finished in the 4th position, while Ramadhipa finished in the 7th position.
In the Supersports 600 (SS600) class, two racers from East Java, M. Adenanta Putra and Fadillah Arbi Aditama, consistently vied for positions within the top five from the beginning of the race.
With determined efforts and their best performance, Arbi, who was riding a CBR600RR for the first time, managed to finish in the 5th position, while Adenanta had to settle for the 7th position.
The second race of the ARRC Mandalika series in West Nusa Tenggara is scheduled to take place on Sunday, August 13, 2023. The AP250 class will start at 2:00 PM local time, and the SS600 class will start at 2:50 PM local time.
Racer Herjun expressed, "Alhamdulillah, I was able to capitalize on the pole position well. Although I had to fiercely compete at the beginning of the race, I managed to widen the gap and maintain my position until the finish line. I'm very happy to bring victory for Astra Honda in Mandalika, in front of the Indonesian community, family, and all who support me. I will strive to achieve another win in the second race."
Rheza said, "Starting from the 7th position was indeed a challenge. During qualification, I had an accident before setting the best time. In the first race, I tried to gradually move forward and managed to secure the second position. Although I tried to maintain the race pace, in the last two turns, I lost positions due to an inaccurate line. This made me settle for the 4th position. I will strive to perform better in the second race."
Ramadhipa commented, "I gained valuable experience in my first competition in the AP250 class. Despite starting from the 6th position, I remained focused on competing within the leading group. However, tough competition forced me to adjust my race pace and distance myself from the leading group. I will strive to perform better in the second race."
Adenanta stated, "My efforts to continually press for positions didn't go as expected. Especially in the last lap, I experienced several instances of traction loss. In the end, I finished in the 7th position. I hope to perform better in the second race."
Arbi added, "The supersport race in Mandalika provided valuable experience. I'm still adapting to various aspects, including the characteristics of the supersport motorcycle. When I was in the 4th position, I tried to increase speed to catch up with the top three. However, the front wheel started losing grip, so I had to struggle to hold on. I will strive to perform better tomorrow and request prayers and support."