Japanese newcomer Maxi Hattori put in an impressive performance at the Suzuki Asian Challenge selection process for the second season of the Suzuki talent development programme. Auditioning during the official pre-season test of the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship at the Johor Circuit in Pasir Gudang, Malaysia, Maxi posted the fastest time of 2’01.633s.

Malaysia’s Mohd Rozaliman Zakaria was the second fastest contestant with 2’01.795s and Indonesia’s Jefri Tosema was third fastest with 2’01.833s. All three at the top end of the timesheets are new candidates and have performed better than the repeat riders.

Only four riders have been retained from the 2015 season. They are India’s Jagan Kumar, Philippine’s Mario Borbon Jr and April King Mascardo, as well as Singapore’s Arsyad Rusydi Shaharum.

The Suzuki Asian Challenge expanded its footprint this season and has brought together riders from nine Asian countries for the selection. The represented countries are (in no particular order) Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Nepal.

Day 1 Pre-Season Selection Results:

1. Maxi Hattori (JPN), 2’01.633s; 2. Muhd Rozaliman Zakaria (MAS), 2’01.795s; 3. Jeffri Tosema (INA), 2’01.833s; 4. Jagan Kumar (IND), 2’02.171s; 5. Rizal Feriyadi (INA), 2’02.442s