ARRC: Who will miss SS600 race at The Bend and who will be there

Some will be there, some will not…At The Bend, the track that will host the second 2018 Asia Road Racing Championship Round, the starting list of SuperSports 600cc class will be a bit different. Yes, because some riders who usually race in SS600 will not be at The Bend and, moreover, there will be some interesting new faces to keep an eye on. Here’s a recap of what’s new.


The first Australian race for the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship will flag off without its most high-profile Australian rider – Anthony West.

The 37-year-old MotoGP and WSSP rider will skip the opportunity to race in front of his home fans as he heads to Aragon in order to fulfill previous contractual obligations in the World SuperSports series.

West runs his own team in the World SSP, team EAB AntWest Racing. He is currently 10th on the standings.



British Supersport rider Joe Francis is team Webike IKAZUCHI Racing’s pick to replace the absent Anthony West on the SuperSports 600cc grid.

The 21-year-old Brit has been progressing up the British Superbike Championship ranks in recent years, and finished 7th overall in the Dickies British Supersport in 2016.

Other riders that were under consideration to fill in for West included the likes of Gino Rea and Augusto Fernandez.



Mohd Zaqhwan Zaidi will be sticking to his training goals as a scheduling clash between the Asia Road Racing Championship and the All Japan Road Race forces the MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda rider into a catch-22 situation.

However, the team’s directives for Zaqhwan had been clear right from the start of 2018. Zaqhwan’s main focus for 2018 will be the JSB1000 class of the All Japan Road Race. This is considered as training to hone his race craft with the objective of winning the first ASB1000 title when the class is introduced into the ARRC roster in 2019.

Therefore, Zaqhwan will be taking a leave of absence from the Australian grid in Round 2. To uphold team honours in the upcoming race, team MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda will be banking on their latest recruit, Tomoyoshi Koyama who will be flying to Australia fresh from his recent ST600 win in the All Japan’s opening race.

Zaqhwan’s full season debut in the JSB1000 got off to a rocky start at the season opener in Motegi. Qualifying under cold, rainy and slippery conditions was a tough challenge and he was disappointed when he only managed to qualify 28th on the grid. Zaqhwan managed to make up for lost ground during the race as he finished 19th in Race 1 and picked up a couple of points in Race 2 by coming home 14th.



Motorcycling Australia (MA) has announced that Broc Pearson, Tom Toparis, Scott Nicholson, Zac Levy and Locky Taylor have secured wildcard entries for the 2018 FIM Asia Road Racing Championship Round 2 at The Bend Motorsport Park on April 19 to 22, 2018.

Pearson, Toparis and Nicholson are slated to wildcard in the SuperSports 600cc, Zac Levy will be the Australian wildcard in the Asia Production 250cc while Locky Taylor will be the first Australian rider to race in the Underbone 150cc. All five riders will be pulling double duty all weekend, competing in both the ARRC and ASBK.


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