SUPX Thanarat Penjan wins Asian Supercross races in Saudi Arabia
2009 FIM UAM ASIAN SUPERCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Reem, Saudi Arabia - December 3-4, round 4
THAILAND’S PENJAN WINS INAUGURAL FIM UAM ASIAN
SUPERCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP RACES IN SAUDI ARABIA
Penjan confirmed as 2009 FIM UAM Asian Supercross champion
Japanese rider Otsuka seals pair of second places
Mongolia’s Endenbileg snatches second place in Asian Championship
RIYADH (Saudi Arabia), Friday, December 4: Thailand’s Thanarat Penjan won Saudi Arabia’s inaugural FIM UAM Asian Supercross Championship race meeting at the Reem International Circuit in Riyadh on Friday afternoon. He also clinched the 2009 UIM UAM Asian Supercross Championship title.
The event was staged in the presence of His Royal Highness Prince Sultan bin Fahd Al-Saud, President of Youth Welfare and the President of the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee (SAOC).
It actually rained in Riyadh before the start of the first of two Asian races on the purpose-built course.
The Thai rider won both races: he led from the start to the chequered flag after dominating the first race, but was forced to pass four other riders to confirm victory in race two. Runner-up in both of the Saudi races was the 40-year-old Japanese rider Tadakauzu Otsuka, who duly finished second in the general classification at the Saudi race meeting.
“I am physically fit and I feel that gave me a distinct advantage on this demanding course,” admitted a delighted Penjan. “The course is tricky and I needed to focus and be at my best. It was doubly special to confirm the championship title.”
Filipino Kenneth San Andres finished third in both the races to claim a similar position in the overall Saudi rankings. Indonesia’s Ape Ddang and Mongolia’s Khaliunbold Endenbileg were fifth and fourth in race one and swapped positions in race two, with Endenbileg clinching second position in the overall championship.
“I am very happy to take second in the championship,” admitted the Mongolian, who commented that one metre of snow had fallen in his native Mongolia today. Russian rider Evgeny Golushko finished seventh in race one, but made a late braking mistake early in race two. He managed to restart and finished at the rear of the field in eighth position.
The Saudi Arabian Motor Federation (SAMF) hosted the fourth round of the championship - the first three rounds took place in the Philippines, Mongolia and Indonesia - and the race meeting marked the first time that the sport has been staged in the Middle East region.
“I would like to thank all the participants for taking part in this first event of its kind in the Middle East,” said Mishaal Al-Sudairy, President of the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation. “I also wish to thank HRH Prince Sultan bin Fahd Al-Saud, under whose patronage the event has run this week. I extend our thanks to HRH Prince Bandar Al- Faisal, Chairman of Zain Reem, for sponsoring the event, to Stephan Crapiet of the FIM UAM Motocross and Enduro Commission and to all our marshals and officials for their hard work.
“Motor sport is about team work and we hope that this is the first of many events of its kind we will host in the future. We also hope to train our own riders to take part in this championship in the coming years.”
Thailand’s Thanarat Penjan had been the fastest of the eight entrants on his Yamaha in Thursday’s qualifying session with a time of 12m 28.991s for his eight laps of the circuit. He set a fastest lap of 1m 18.052s, which was sufficient to pip second-placed Filipino Kenneth San Andres and Mongolia’s Khaliunbold Erdenbileg, who finished third. Eight riders took part in the qualifying session, with Russia’s Evgeny Golushko and Filipino Jan Carlo Rellosa completing the top five.
Action at the Reem International Circuit was sponsored by Zain Communications, Bison energy drink and Castrol and the event ran under the auspices of the Saudi Arabian Motor Federation (SAMF).
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