Honda India heads to Australia ARRC after Malaysia success

Rachit Thukral

An all-Indian rider line-up of Rajiv Sethu and Senthil Kumar will represent the team in the Asia Production 250cc category, which sits above the entry level Underbone 150cc class.

Sethu kicked off his third season in ARRC with a career best result of 11th in the opening race of Malaysia curtain raiser. His drive in race 2 was even more heroic, as he charged his way from back of the pack to finish inside the points.

Kumar, meanwhile, enjoyed a successful series debut at the Sepang Circuit last month, scoring points in his very first race. He, however, crashed out from the second race of the weekend with an unforced error.

Both riders will be looking for another strong weekend, with Sethu in particular aiming for a top 10 result. The Chennai-based rider has already ridden around the Australian circuit, having raced in ARRC last year.

“After riding in the Bend motorsport park in 2018, my entire focus this weekend will be to improve my riding style,” he said in the team preview.

“With the full support of my IDEMITSU Honda Racing India team and propelled under the guidance of [coach] Mr. [Tomoyoshi] Koyama, I feel much more confident of my race-craft in this tricky track. I am striving for a Top 10 finish.”

Senthil Kumar, Honda Racing India

Senthil Kumar, Honda Racing India ARRC

ARRC

Bend Motorsport Park will represent a new challenge for Senthil, but the Thai Talent Cup graduate is nevertheless confident of a good showing.

“Representing India on an international circuit and scoring points in my first race in Malaysia has given me positive momentum,” he said.

“Australia is a new track for me and a very technical one too. But with the full support of my team, I am groomed and trained for every challenge. I aim to go ahead full steam and snap points for India.”

Mr. Prabhu Nagaraj, Vice President – Brand and Communications, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt. Ltd. added: “Honda made a good start to 2019 ARRC season. Both Rajiv and Senthil lapped up points in the first round and put the solo Indian team among Top 7 [in the teams’ standings].

“Now, round 2 in Australia brings with it new set of challenges. Senthil faces the daunting challenge of mastering Adelaide track but is excited to make new records.

“Rajiv is already aware of the track and his past experience will support him in scoring top chart.

“The team has come back with intense training, more learning and the final wind in the wings will be the world class guidance by ex-GP rider Tomoyoshi Koyama. We are confident that both riders will outperform and will make India proud”.

The second round of ARRC season begins with practice on Thursday, followed by the all-important qualifying on Friday. The two races will be split across Saturday and Sunday.