“If you asked me 10 years ago, if I could grab the title, the enthusiastic me would have said, Oh yes, In a couple of years! However, if you have asked me the same question like five years ago, I would have laughed away! Yet, I have never surrendered even once.”

“If you have asked me 10 years ago, if I could grab the title, the enthusiastic me would have said, yes, in a couple of years! However, if you have asked me the same question like five years ago, I would have laughed away! Yet, I never surrendered!”

Twelve years and 155 days after making his debut in the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship, Vorapong Malahuan finally did it. Vorapong can be classified as one of the popular and unfaltering winners in the history of ARRC. No wonder there was a raw mix of emotions when tears and cheers filled the air at the end of the TVS One Make Championship last season.

It would have never crossed his mind, just how long it would take to stand on the top step of the podium when he first took part in ARRC, in the Underbone 155cc race category. Back then, he represented Thailand Idemitsu Honda Racing Team. It was the season opener and he was 19 years old. It took another eleven seasons and 62 rounds in three different categories coupled with pain and frustrations before he experienced that feeling of being a winner, being crowned the Asian Champion for the very first time, in the newly established race category, TVS Asia One Make Championship.

A 12-year-old boy who fell in love with speed and acceleration two decades ago, he began his racing journey with motorbike drag racing and it took him a solid 7 years before he made it to the real deal – Road Racing!

“I’m a person who is very fond of speed and competitions ever since I was a young kid. I love bikes more than anything else in my life – my First Ever Love. I would say that I have devoted my life to this two-wheels, ha ha… I was 12 years old when I started my two wheels journey. My dad enrolled me in the motorbike drag racing, obviously after I bugged him for some time and finally he relented.”

“Then, it took me another seven years before I started pursuing motorcycle racing professionally. Definitely, I would thank my previous and very first team who trusted my ability and gave me the chance to explore the real track all over Asia. Who would have imagined right… born in Chiang Mai, a city of mountainous northern Thailand, well-known for its culture and tribe of two villages. Currently, flying around, living my dreams and finally, I made history. I am definitely proud that I did not throw in the towel just yet.”

“12 years was a rough patch. Well, motorsport itself is a tough business and every rider, even World Champions would have struggled to reach their goal. In a career that sees us typically travelling eight months in a year, despite down times, disappointments and frustrations or even injuries, there is a great need to bounce back up for the next race. We have to continuously move on, each and every time!”

“I think as a sports person, we have the ability to switch on and off, it is what makes us unique. And I think that’s how I have also survived all these years. If I have given up after a few years of trying, I would not have gotten the chance to taste the sweet flavours of success.”

Last season, the 35-year-old Thai rider displayed extraordinary skills with podium in each round. Vorapong’s journey in motorsport is quite an inspiration not only as a rider but also with his leadership skills through his academy, named AVRP Racing which provides professional training and courses to all ages and with no gender discrimination.

“I am happy to say that my journey will never end with racing on track but it continues through my academy. If one day, I decide to retire from racing, I would continue serving through knowledge sharing. In our academy, we have professional tutors who help motorsport maniacs or enthusiasts enhance their skills with safety being the priority.”

“As of now, I have no plans of retiring. I am still fit and I think I am able to push my contenders further. The victory last season creates an even greater appetite towards success. So, yea… let’s welcome another year of “Bikegasm. I am all set for the race this weekend.