Zaqhwan Zaidi at the Malaysian World Superbike Championship in SEpang last weekend

If it is every rider’s dream to make it to the world championships, then for team owners, the dream would be to grow their establishment to the point where they too, would be running an outfit at the international level. For former Malaysian GP rider Shahrol Yuzy Ahmad Zaini, this dream has been the motivation factor behind his relentless efforts to continue developing more Malaysian riders with international potential.

Yuzy’s eye for talent and ability to inspire the best from his riders has been proven not just once but twice. First with Zulfahmi Khairuddin, and most recently through Mohd Zaqhwan Zaidi’s creditable World SuperSports wildcard foray in the inaugural Malaysian round of the World Superbike Championship where the 19-year old made an impression to finish ninth in the Supersports category.

However, Yuzy believes that his work is far from done and is not one to rest on his laurels based on the achievements of his proteges. “When I first hung up my racing boots, my dream was to eventually take Yuzy Racing international. But that is something that requires many years of hard work before it can come to fruition. That is the reason why this year, I have expanded our operations at the Asian region by collaborating with a Japanese team, T.Pro Innovation headed by Yusuke Teshima,” said Yuzy.

Shahrol Yuzy
Together, they form Team T.Pro Yuzy Honda in the 2014 PETRONAS FIM Asia Road Racing Championship line-up and features an international 6-rider stable comprising of three SuperSports 600cc riders and three Underbone 130cc riders. In the premiere class, the team manages yet another former Moto2 rider Tomoyoshi Koyama alongside Satoru Iwata and Indonesian ace M. Fadli Immammuddin. In the Underbone class, the team is represented by two Malaysian riders Mohd Rozaiman Said and Mohd Amirul Ariff Musa as well as Japanese rookie Taiga Hada.
On paper, both team owners share a lot of similarities. Both are former riders who have made it into the international scene. But more importantly, both are driven by their passion for developing young Asian riders. “We are working together because we both want to keep the original dream alive. By the term ‘original dream’, we mean placing riders at the world championships by our own path, and running our own international outfit,” Yuzy explained.

“In the past, riders initially identified and then developed by the national teams must leave the team in order to race at the regional and international level. A good example right now would be Zaqhwan who races for my team in the national championship but represents MUSASHi Boon Siew Honda the factory team, in the Asian region. That is good for the rider but it also means that there is little chance for the team to grow alongside the talent that we have developed,” he added.

“By working together with team T.Pro Innovation, Yuzy Racing with our expertise in Underbone racing becomes the training ground for young Japanese riders who have just graduated from pocket bikes. When these riders are ready to step up to the higher capacities, we now have a natural conduit to the SuperSports 600cc category. For now, at the initial stages of our partnership, you could say that we are something of a one-stop shop for developing riders. Eventually, we hope to also mould our team into a pipeline for Asian riders into the world level,” Yuzy concluded.

Words and Photos by ARRC NEWS

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