MUSASHSI Boon Siew Honda’s Zaqwan Zaidi recorded the fastest ever time by a Supersport 600 at Sentul, going around the 3.96km circuit in 1:29.628 to take pole position for Race 1 as Round 4 of the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship opens at Sentul International Circuit.

Zaqwan’s qualifying performance followed his dominance of all three free practice sessions on Friday, during which he showed the top Indonesian riders as well contenders for the 2017 championship the way around the track’s 3.96km and 11 turns.  

Perhaps most revealing was Free Practice 2, in which Zaqwan completed nine laps in the 1:30s, with nobody else able to break the 1:31 barrier.

By the time Qualifying got underway, several riders had got closer, most notably Rama Honda’s Taiga Hada, the Astra Honda of Dimas Ekky Pratama and Yamaha Thailand’s Chalermpol, all of whom joined Zaqwan below 1:30. Decha Kraisart was fifth fastest on 1:30.22, followed by Ahmad Yudhistira on the Manual Tech KYT Kawasaki, Yuki Ito, Ratthapong Wilairot for AP Honda, and championship leader, Azlan Shah, who is still hampered by a hand injury. These five riders were separated by just half a second.

On the form so far, Zaqwan will start favourite, though he will need to see off challenges from another five or six riders if he is to bank another 25 points this afternoon.