On a hazy day in Sepang, defending champion Steve Martin beats the haze and his main challenger Ahmad Nashrul Baharuddin to pen his sixth win in the Superstock Championship at Round 4 of the Malaysia Superbike Championship (MSC) today.
With just a race run for the round due to heavy haze conditions that forced the cancellation of the morning activities, the British turned the table against his Malaysian rival, who won Race 2 yesterday to end Martin’s run of five successive wins for the season.
With another 25 points won today, Martin has amassed a total of 170 points and moved closer to his second consecutive Superstock crown. Ahmad, who collected an identical score of 45 points yesterday with Martin, now has 138 points with just one round and two more races to go.
MSC’s clerk-of-the-course Fazli Affandi Mukhtar decided to call off the opening morning race for all categories due to heavy haze conditions in the interest of safety of the riders. That, effectively, jeopardized Ahmad Nashrul’s ambitions of reducing his gap on Martin in the championship standings.
Ahmad Nashrul, however, was unable to take advantage even on the single race held today for Round 4 as the 2013 Superstock champion was outpaced by the skill of Martin and the power of his rival’s Kawasaki ZX10R machine.
Martin completed the 12-lap battle in 27 minutes 3.319 seconds against Ahmad Nashrul’s total time of 27 minutes 8.765 seconds on his Kawasaki ZX10R machine. Malaysia’s motocross king, Mohd Al-Amirul Ashshahid took third place in 27 minutes 10.742 seconds in another Kawasaki machine.
Unlike Martin, Cameron Donald, who scored a double victory yesterday for Round 3, was unable to add to his winning streak today as the former Australian Superbike champion was defeated by Malaysian Muhammad Zaqhwan Zaidi in a thrilling battle between the two heavyweights.
The former Moto2 rider draw deep in his rich experience to beat Cameron in the 12-lap battle around the 5,543-meter track in 26 minutes 39.617 seconds on his Honda CBR machine to finish 0.063 seconds ahead of the Australian, who finished in 26 minutes 39.680 seconds. Malaysian Ahmad Fuad Baharuddin completed the podium.
In the Supersports championship, defending champion Muhammad Farid Badrul Hisham will take a five-point advantage over Hazlanshah Mohd Noor into the final after he successfully edged out his Bike Art Racing team-mate and best friend in today’s Round 4 battle.
In the final event for the Round 4 programme, Muhammad Farid Badrul Hisam won the 12-lap contest; finishing 0.104 seconds ahead of Hazlanshah in 22 minutes 32.697 seconds to secure 25 precious points to take his total tally to 155 points.
After the conclusion of the third round yesterday, both riders Hazlanshah were tied on 130 championship points after Hazlanshah took 45 points from one victory and one second place. With just a round to go, he now has 150 points; taking the championship battle to the wire.
In a combined race of the budding talents in the MGP-3 Championship and Open 250 Championship, youngster Muhammad Adam Noroddin was first to the chequered flag in 19 minutes 6.849 second with lady rider Siti Norafizah Muhamad taking first place for the Open 250 championship; completing the eight-lap contest in 21 minutes 19.148 seconds.
Round 5 and the final round of the 2015 Pirelli Malaysia Superbike Championship will be held on November 20 to 22 along with the Grand Finals of the 2015 KBS MAM Kapcai Endurance Championship.
Pirelli Malaysia Superbike Championship Round 4
Results – Top 3 Finishers
Superstock Championship – Race 4 (12 laps)
1.Steve Martin (Kawasaki ZX10R) 27:03.319
2.Ahmad Nashrul Baharuddin (Kawasaki ZX10RR) 27:08.765
3.Mohd Al-Amirul Ash shahid (Kawasaki ZX10R) 27:10.742
Superbike Championship – Race 4 (12 laps)
1.Muhammad Zaqhwan Zaidi (Honda CBR) 26:39.617
2. Cameron Donald (Suzuki GSX1000) 26:39.680
3. Ahmad Fuad Baharrudin (Honda CBR1000RR) 26:49.265
Supersports Championship – Race 4 (12 laps)
1.Muhammad Farid Badrul Hisam (Kawasaki ZX6R) 22:32.697
2. Hazlanshah Mohd Noor (Kawasaki ZX6R) 22:32.801
3. Muhamad Fitri Ashraf (Yamaha YZF R6) 22:35.995
MGP-3 Championship – Race 4 (8 laps)
1.Muhammad Adam M.Norrodin (Honda NSF 250) 19:06.849
2. Muhammad Helmi Azman (Honda NSF 250) 19:10.451
3. Luth Harith Erwan (Honda NSF 250) 21:05.484
Open 250 Championship – Race 4 (8 laps)
1.Siti Norafizah bt Muhamad (Kawasaki Ninja 250) 21:19.148
2. Angelo Neo (Honda CBR 250) 19:14.988 (7 laps)
3. Khairul Anwar Jamil (Honda CBR250) 19:16.387 (7 laps)