The Thai riders on the Asia Production 250cc grid made full use of their homeground advantage to come up tops in the first day of free practices at the final round of the 2018 FIM Asia Road Racing Championship.
Racing at the 4.5km Chang International Circuit, AP Honda Racing Thailand’s Kritchaporn Kaewsonthi topped the timesheets for the first time as the quickest man of the day with 1’52.997s. The Honda rider broke the previous 1’53.064s lap record set by Anupab Sarmoon in Round 1.
Even though the Asia Production 250cc title is now safely in the hands of Rheza Danica Ahrens, the level of competition in the class had not abated. The top-10 riders of the day all managed to lap within a second of each other. Anupab Sarmoon from the Yamaha Thailand Racing Team was second quickest with 1’53.089s followed by Kawasaki’s Andy Muhammad Fadly in third with 1’53.339s.
Mario Suryo Aji, eager to redeem himself after a double crash weekend in the previous round in Indonesia, posted fourth fastest with 1’53.598s. Mario will need to repeat his double podium performance here at the Chang International Circuit to stand a chance of finishing the season in second overall.
Peerapong Boonlert clocked in fifth fastest with 1’53.643s while Round 1 winner Muklada Sarapuech was sixth.
Uncharacteristically, Rheza Danica Ahrens only logged the tenth fastest time of the day with 1’53.859s.