A nerve-wrecking show, the SuperSports 600cc race category has never been more exhilarating and gets more compelling as it goes. Keito Abe of ONEXOX TKKR Racing Team was on fire at his home- ground but what does Pertamina Mandalika International Circuit hold for him in Round 4 of the Idemitsu FIM Asia Road Racing Championship?

Quite a performance he pulled-off in Round 3 at the Sugo circuit and now Keito Abe is looking forward to once again injecting pressure and pleasure to the scene of the SS600 race category. The Japanese rider began his endeavours in the Asian road racing mid last season and may have indicated some struggles in adapting to the nature of the championship. However, come this season, Keito Abe has showcased quite an improvement since the beginning and reached its peak in the previous round where he bagged the top spot on the podium in Race 1. In Race 2, Keito Abe’s slick manoeuvring style was the biggest highlight as he went on to guard his position throughout the race only to be defeated at the 11th hour.

Speaking of his improved performances, Keito said, “The first few rounds were held at circuits where I already gained experience so that is a big factor in my improvements compared to last year. Apart from that, having raced now for the second season in the ARRC, it has made me stronger mentally and physically. Of course, Sugo being my home circuit was a plus point for me and I have also practiced on the circuit on different conditions during off-season. That was an additional boost for me.” On race 2 of Round 3, he continued, “KIP was better in tire management compared during race 2. I lost because I could not pace up as much as I wanted at the final turn before going up-hill.”

On moving forward, Keito said, “I have a lot more to improve. Although my strengths were accentuated at Sugo, I still lack that kind of ability on other circuits. For the upcoming race at Mandalika, it would be tough as I have not raced there. I have visited Mandalika though, once, last year. From videos and the course map, I have the impression that it is a stop-and-go course, similar to Buriram. My feeling at Burriam was not bad but the win and podium at Sugo was an excellent booster to my confidence for the race at Mandalika.”

He continued, “So far, I am preparing for the race week just like I always do prior to any race. Since it is a new circuit ground for me, I am learning from theory by watching videos to get an idea of what is ahead of me. I think the team has more confidence in me now too but that also comes with greater expectations which I hope to fulfil. Like any other riders, the goal is always to win. I want to win both raced. Period. To make that happen, I would have to be better-focused in getting the right setup especially for the tires. If I can sustain myself among the leaders during the race, then I am pretty positive that I can win!”

Connect with Us!

Latest news at asiaroadracing.com