Aaron sixth at Asian Road Racing C’ship | Sunday Observer

Aaron sixth at Asian Road Racing C’ship

Aaron Gunawardenahas clinched an unprecedented sixth position at the Asian road racing championship making him the first Lankan to get this far in an all Asia Championship event, there were a few wild card riders from Great Britain, Thailand and Indonesia but Aaron’s performance was noticed by many.

Aaron got off to a good start in the first round in Malaysia finishing 4th and 5th in the curtain raiser. After a disastrous start with a wrong gear choice in the first race of the second round, Aaron managed to bounce back to finish his second race in Thailand on the podium.

The 3rd round of the championship was held in Suzuka Japan and Aaron out did the Japanese on home soils with a record breaking run, setting a new lap record on the Suzuka circuit as well as 2 more top five finishes.

The 4th round was held in Indonesia and Aaron was able to bag another 16 valuable points though nursing an injury on left shoulder.

Aaron went in to the final round comfortably in 5th position, but struggled to keep up the pace in the curtail closer in Thailand and had to settle for 6th position in the overall championship rankings ahead of Chepy Armansy from Indonesia, EaneJaye Sobreto & Mario Borbon Jr. from Philippines, Jefri osema, Samsol Mohamed & Zulhilmi from Malaysia, the Indian riders Jagan Kumar, K Y Ahmed, Prabu Arunagiri and also ahead of Patis Choopra, Edward Faulk head, TakeruMurase, BikramThapa, Bruce Wilson respectively from Thailand, Australia, Japan, Nepal and Great Britain

Punchana Kulrojchalalai bagged most of the podiums throughout the championship and kept the home crowd in high spirits winning the fifth and final round in Thailand, April King H. Mascardo, Tetsuya Fujita, Ahmad Saugi & Nur Al Fath Sam Ahmed also shared most of the podiums throughout the championship and finished respectively in the top 5 slots.

The proud dad says, the achievement surely has put Sri Lanka on the map of racing, the past seven years of touring overseas has been fruitful and we are glad to be running the same pace as the top riders in Asia.

Our journey would have come to a halt if not for the support from the Sports Ministry, we had more than a dozen tours in 2016 and 2017 with the Asian and Indian championships and the Rookies Cup in Spain, where the airfares were all borne by the Ministry.

Shane went on to say that now that his sons have reached a stage where they could use their skills to train local riders, he has teamed up with SLARDAR to organize one make racing in Sri Lanka, and have found sponsors for the event too.

Jaden and Aaron’s success is owing to one make racing and close competitions and he is happy that Melwa steel has come forward not only to support his sons but the sport too. We would need a few more large companies like Melwa steel coming in to support the sport, a proper racing circuit is much needed, as it is not easy travelling to India, Thailand or Malaysia for practice and track days. 

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