The frustrations of sitting out Race 2 at Buriram behind him, Indonesian rider Gerry Salim came back in a big way with an uncontested win at Race 1 of Round 3 in Suzuka. The Astra Honda Racing rider was the star of a dramatic qualifying when he clinched the pole position at the very last minutes of the session.
Starting from pole position, Gerry easily captured the holeshot and went on to lead the 8-lap race. The first five laps were particularly intense as Gerry fought off persistent attacks from Takehiro Yamamoto and Tomoyoshi Koyama. The young Indonesian tried to pull away on Lap 5 but was soon reeled back in again. The battle continued neck-to-neck up to the chequered flag. Gerry bagged his fourth win of the season with 20’01.909s and was escorted up the podium by Yamamoto in second place with 20’01.978s and Tomoyoshi Koyama third with 20’02.415s.
Gerry’s team mate, Rheza Danica Ahrens again lived up to his top billings by finishing fourth. Racing astride the new model CBR250RR, AP Honda Racing Thailand’s Muklada Sarapuech completed the Suzuka race in fifth place.
Andy Muhammad Fadly astride the sole factory Kawasaki on the 250cc grid finished sixth ahead of Vorapong Malahuan, Soichiro Minamimoto, Rey Ratukore and Ashin Sanjaya who completed the top ten.
Gerry now holds 100 points at the top of the standings. Yamamoto was second with 94 points and Rheza Danica Ahrens third overall with 73 points.