Expectations were high heading into the final two FIM CEV Repsol Moto3 Junior World Championship races of year for the Asia Talent Team, but it proved hard work for all the riders.
Tricky conditions awaited the four remaining Asia Talent Team riders; Ayumu Sasaki sitting the two races out due to back pain. Warm Up was interrupted by a red flag and spits of rain during the resumed session meant little could be learnt.
The first of the day’s two races was a true disaster as none of the team finished the race. Nakarin Atiratphuvapat and Kazuki Masaki came together on lap ten, both fortunate to avoid any serious injuries. Both Andi Farid and Kaito Toba fell later, also avoiding injury.
Unfortunately the team’s fortunes carried on largely the same in race two. Andi Farid suffered a heavy fall at Turn 2 and was carried away from the race before Kaito Toba and Nakarin Atiratphuvapat ultimately joined him in the gravel. Masaki fought through the pain barrier, having been hit by Atiratphuvapat’s bike in the first race, to take 12th.
Despite the torrid final races, the Asia Talent Team can hold their heads high with what they have achieved in 2016.
Toba took a victory and two podiums, ending the season with 103 points and fourth place in the championship standings. Having missed the final two races, Sasaki ends the 2016 season in sixth overall with 83 points and a single podium to his name.
Masaki scored points in all but two races in 2016, leaving the year with 72 points and a place in the top ten overall.
Two crashes saw Nakarin Atiratphuvapat unable to add to his 33 points, but the Thai rider proved himself as an established top-ten contender. He now moves to the World Championship alongside Sasaki and Toba, where they can continue to improve his race craft.
Andi Farid ends his first season racing in Europe with four points and immense experience gained.
The FIM CEV Repsol will be back in 2017, beginning at the Albacete Circuit on the 30th of April.