TEAM MUSASHi BOON SIEW HONDA’S 3-MAN STRATEGY FOR 2018

Honda’s recent line-up announcement has revealed the depth of planning that has gone into the motorcycling giant’s strategy for the Asian title.

For the first time in six years, team MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda will field a 3-rider line-up comprising of Malaysian duo Mohd Zaqhwan Zaidi and Azzroy Hakeem Anuar as well as Japanese rider Tomoyoshi Koyama.

While the team has yet to name the lead rider, expectations are that Koyama will assume the leading role in the team’s 2018 campaign. This impression is further reinforced by recent updates about Zaqhwan’s full-season ride in the JSB1000 class of the All-Japan. This development leads to the logical conclusion that the 2-time Asian Champion is being groomed to win the ASB1000 crown when the litre class is finally introduced in 2019.

Name: MOHD ZAQHWAN ZAIDI
Age: 23 (1995)
Nat: MAS
Bike No: 21
Make: Honda
Team: MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda
Class: SuperSports 600cc
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS:
2014 CHAMPION – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship

CHAMPION – CP130, PETRONAS AAM Malaysian Cub Prix Championship

2015 Moto2 World Championship (4 rounds)

10th overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship

2016 CHAMPION – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
4th overall – CP130, PETRONAS AAM Malaysian Cub Prix Championship
2017 2nd overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship

Along the same veins, Malaysian-based MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda will still need a strong local rider to eventually fill Zaqhwan’s slot when he moves up to the 1000cc. 19-year-old Azzroy Hakeem Anuar fits the bill to a T. Azzroy, alongside young riders like Kasma Daniel Kasmayuddin, are increasingly viewed as the next rising motorsports star in Malaysia. This will be Azzroy’s first full-season astride the 600cc bike.

Name: AZROY HAKEEM ANUAR
Age: 19 (1999)
Nat: MAS
Bike No: 20
Make: Honda
Team: Yuzy Honda Vietnam Racing
Class: Underbone 150cc
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS:
2013 13th overall – Honda Future One Make Challenge, Malaysian Cub Prix Championship
2014 2nd overall – Honda Future One Make Challenge, Malaysian Cub Prix Championship
2015 14th overall – Asia Talent Cup
2016 15th overall – Underbone 130cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
2016 4th overall – CP115, Malaysian Cub Prix Championship
2017 5th overall – Underbone 150cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship

But with all that planning going towards 2019, let’s not forget that there is still a title to be won in 2018! This is where Tomoyoshi Koyama comes in. Nicknamed ‘The Shadow’ by the Asian racing fraternity, Koyama’s neat, precise and flawless rider often has him overlooked on a track filled with drama and theatrics. Overlooked, that is, until he powers his way up to the podium.

Name: TOMOYOSHI KOYAMA
Age: 35 (1983)
Nat: JPN
Bike No: 71
Make: Honda
Team: RAMA Honda
Class: Asia Production 250cc
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS:
2002 3rd overall – All Japan Road Race
2003 2nd overall – All Japan Road Race
2004 2nd overall – All Japan Road Race
2005 GP125 World Championships
2007 3rd overall – GP125 World Championships
2011 – 2012 Moto2 World Championships
2013 5th overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
2014 5th overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
2015 2nd overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
2016 2nd overall – SuperSports 600cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship
2017 2nd overall – Asia Production 250cc, FIM Asia Road Racing Championship

The Japanese rider is a seasoned campaigner and is no stranger to the intense title chase in the 600cc premiere class. Koyama came close to taking the 2015 and 2016 title. With team MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda, Koyama has earned himself a third shot at the elusive SuperSports 600cc crown.

Together, these three riders will be tasked with the mission of taking back the Asian title against a highly motivated Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman and his Kawasaki team.