A much-anticipated race category, the SuperSports 600cc was a show-stopper today at the Chang International Circuit as the Japanese and Malaysian rider went all out to make it or break it. But the one who walked away with the bragging rights was Apiwath Wongthananon of YAMAHA GEN BLU Racing Team ASEAN when he won Race 2, Round 6 of the Idemitsu FIM Asia Road Racing Championship.

In Race 1 that happened yesterday, pole-man, Soichiro was dominant on the circuit, taking lead from flag off to chequered flag. While his teammate, Apiwath trailed closely behind, it seemed rather conspicuous that it was to keep Khairul Idham at bay. Nevertheless, Khairul went on a solo-mission, keeping himself positioned firmly on the racing line throughout the 12-lap race. Soichiro who has improved significantly over the last few rounds proved his calibre when he crossed the finish line first with Apiwath taking second and Khairul succumbing to third.

As soon as the race flagged off, once again, Soichiro took lead with teammate Apiwath right behind him. At P3, Khairul struggled to keep up. By the end of lap 1, Azroy took P3. Into the third lap, Khairul who was in contention of the championship title crashed. His teammate, Azroy however found his way ahead of Apiwath as he went on to chase Soichiro. The Japanese rider was already ahead by 0.9s. Apiwath tried to close the gap with Azroy and he made it but Azroy was fiery as he went on to pressure the Thai rider. With 7 more lap to go, Nakarin made close contact with Azroy, took a shot ahead of him before Azroy slide back ahead of him.

By mid-lap, it was almost evident that Soichiro would be the man of the hour as he went on to draw a gap of 2.016s with the Honda rider trailing behind. Apiwath remained protective at P2. The battle continued between Azroy and Nakarin who kept looking for possible ways to strike but Azroy was careful. Nakarin didn’t give up and finally he swiped past Azroy. But of course, the battle did not end just yet. The duo went on to challenge each other. Ahead of them, Apiwath, knowing that it’s a safe bet, finally made his move ahead of Soichiro before both teammates of YAMAHA GEN BLU Racing Team ASEAN raced towards victory with Apiwath, winner of Race 2 at 19’57:324s and Soichiro, Champion of SS600 race category, Season 2023 at 19’58:553s.

Commenting on the race, Apiwath said, “It was a wonderful and amazing race, today. It was a little difficult for me in the beginning of the race. The engine was not really heated up but lap-by lap, I manged to overtake Azroy and finally made my way up to the top spot. It has been amazing day for us as a team.”

Soichiro Minamimoto said, “It is a perfect weekend for me. This season it has been difficult especially in the beginning of the season up until Japan. From Mandalika onwards, there have been many improvements in my performances. I never expected this but I am so happy to have made it. Thanks to Apiwath for being supportive of me. Thank you, Yamaha and all the sponsors who made this a success!