New Straits Times

Zaqhwan’s focus shifts to JRRC


Asia Road Racing Championsh­ip (ARRC) winner Zaqhwan Zaidi may put the event on the back burner to fully focus on his debut season in the All Japan Road Racing Championsh­ips (JRRC) this year.

As the first Malaysian to compete in JRRC, the Honda Asia Dream Racing rider believes it is important to make an impact in the series where he will be competing in the JSB1000 class.

In total, Zaqhwan will be involved in three major events this year — JRRC, Suzuka Eight-Hour Endurance and ARRC.

"Obviously, I would like to win another ARRC title this year and will work towards that, however, there will be a number of rounds which will clash with the All Japan Series. That will make things harder (in ARRC) but I will try my best," said the 22-year-old.

"At the moment, I am focused on JRRC. The reason is because I am the first Malaysian to compete in it.

"JRRC is also tough. There are a number of riders who were formerly MotoGP riders.

"I will really have to be at my best and learn as much as I can quickly."

Katsuyuki Nakasuga, who won the JRRC SB1000 title five years in a row (20122016), and last year's champion Takumi Takahashi are both well experience­d riders who have made appearance­s in MotoGP before.

JRRC features nine rounds and will run from April to November at Japan's premier racing circuits including Motegi, Suzuka, Autopolis, Sugo, Tsukuba and Okayama.

ARRC features six rounds, starting and ending in Buriram. It starts this month and end in December.

Zaqhwan won the overall title in the SS600 class of ARRC in 2014 and 2016. Fadhli Ishak

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