Sepang International Circuit, Malaysia – Sunday 29th October
Circuit: Sepang International Circuit
Circuit Length: 5.5 km
The 2017 Malaysian Grand Prix saw SIC Racing Team riders Adam Norrodin and Ayumu Sasaki scoring solid points in today’s Moto3 race, crossing the line in 11th [Adam] and 12th [Ayumu] place.
Determined to do well in front of his home crowd, Malaysian rider Adam Norrodin wasted no time launching himself up through the field, claiming seven places within the first lap. With a podium place in sight, the 19-year-old fought his way up to fourth and began closing the gap, when pushing hard saw him make a small mistake and loose the front end of his #7 machine. Refusing to let go of his bike, Norrodin heroically remounted and re-joined the race in fourteenth place. With eight laps remaining Norrodin pushed hard until the bitter end, battling his way to 11th and breaking the lap record in the race, with a time of 2’12.775.
Starting from fourteenth on the grid, teammate Ayumu Sasaki initially gained a position in the opening lap but soon became aware of some small issues with the front end of his Honda machine. Struggling with the feeling on board his #71 bike, the Moto3 rookie focused on retaining a point scoring positon and achieving a respectable 12th place finish in front of the team’s home crowd.
Johan Stigefelt – Team Manager
“Adam was very fast and made a very good start; He pushed really hard on the first few laps and immediately got up to the front. You could see that his target was the podium. He was so close and fought his way to fourth place but then on lap ten going into the first corner he went in just a little bit too fast and crashed. He held onto the bike, picked it up and finished the race, so we are very proud of him for this. He never gave up and finished 11th so I’m happy in one way and disappointed for him in the other. We knew he would have been quite safe in the top five today, but we also know his target was more than fifth, so he went for it. These things can happen, so big credit to Adam for trying so hard.
Ayumu’s race pace today was not as strong as Adam’s but nevertheless he did a good job. He stayed in the group from sixth to thirteenth place and was hanging on even though he had some small issues during the race. He struggled a bit with the front of the bike and couldn’t really push and pass other riders like he wanted, so that held him back a bit. He rode smart and brought home some points in twelfth, so I’m happy with this.”
#7 Adam Norrodin P11
“In the beginning I pushed really hard to stay with the front group because at Sepang the first group always pulls away. I was fighting a lot in the top six but then I saw that Mir was starting to pull away in second place, so I tried to go with him. I knew I had the pace. I passed Loi for fourth position and tried to go but then I asked too much of the front tyre going into the first corner; I pushed too hard and I lost the front. I tried to save it but it was impossible with the speed I was doing.
My confidence is so much higher than this time last year; I felt no pressure in the race; I just wanted to make the podium for my home crowd. I’m happy that I was able to finish the race and still collect some points after the crash but I’m sorry for my team, family, friends and everyone who came here to support us, I wanted so much to achieve a better result today.”
#71 Ayumu Sasaki P12
“In Warm Up this morning we changed the settings a little bit and I had a much better feeling on the bike than in qualifying, so I felt ready for the race. From the Warm Up to the race the temperature was a lot different and this always makes it harder to set up the bike; when I started the race my feeling was not so good on the bike. All I could do was try to follow the front group but I didn’t have the pace to fight with them. In the end I passed two riders and finished 12th, so at least we have some more points. I’m not so happy about our position but I’m pleased we finished in the points at the team’s home race. I’ve really enjoyed being here and I hope that next year we are able to give back a present to the fans and fight for the win! We are getting stronger race by race and this is very important.”