Tyre abrasion was the primary concern among the SuperSports 600cc riders as the first day of free practices concluded for Round 2 at The Bend Motorsport Park. The new track asphalt had proven to be particularly unforgiving.
Nevertheless, competition is still fierce across the grid with a determined Yuki Ito leading the way. The Yamaha Racing Team Asean rider posted 1’57.332s at the top of the timesheets. Also lapping within the same second, are Yamaha Thailand Racing Team duo Decha Kraisart and Keminth Kubo with 1’57.552s and 1’57.964s respectively.
Wildcard Broc Pearson could be a potential podium threat. The Australian rider who is very familiar with the level of competition in the Asia Road Racing Championship, pulled off the fourth fastest time, 1’58.034s. Tomoyoshi Koyama from team MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda logged fifth fastest with 1’58.288s.
The lack of team data at the new circuit is becoming quickly apparent. The first day of practice had brought mixed results among the top 10. Astra Honda Racing Team’s Irfan Ardiansyah was sixth fastest with 1’58.338s. Manual Tech KYT Kawasaki Racing’s Ahmad Yudhistira posted seventh while his defending champion team mate, Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman, clocked a conservative tenth fastest with 1’58.641s.
Malaysian rookie Azroy Hakeem Anuar also produced creditable results, eighth fastest with 1’58.561s. Wildcard Tom Toparis was ninth fastest after the first day of practice.