Chennai: Teenager Rajiv Sethu of Idemitsu Honda Ten10 Racing kept his wits about to win a tense battle against his arch-rival and defending champion Jagan Kumar (TVS Racing) in the premier Super Sport Indian 165cc class at the MMRT on Saturday in the second round of the MRF MMSC fmsci Indian National Motorcycle Racing Championship.
Equally impressive winner was the techie from Bengaluru, 23-year old Anish Shetty, who survived a close battle that went down to the wire, to finish on top in the Pro-Stock 165cc class. It was Shetty’s third win in a row, this season.
The combined race of Super Sport Indian and Pro-Stock 165cc was reduced from six laps to four following a heavy crash before Turn-3 resulting in a red flag on the very first lap. One of the riders involved in the incident, 21-year old Prashanth Kumar (Sparks Racing) from Karimnagar, was immediately rushed to the hospital where he is said to be in a “critical, but stable” conditions after suffering multiple injuries.
On re-start, it was a virtual sprint thereafter, as Sethu, starting second on the grid behind Jagan Kumar, bided his time before the TVS racer ran wide in the penultimate lap. It was just the opening Sethu was waiting for, and he made his move and, held position for his first win of the season. Behind the front runners, championship leader KY Ahamed (TVS Racing) fell at the Bridge Complex “S” when running in the front bunch and eventually finished sixth. Jagan crossed the finish line in second position, followed by Sarath Kumar (Idemitsu Honda Ten10 Racing) to complete the podium.
Likewise, Anish Shetty was involved in a four-cornered fight throughout the four-lap race with lead changing hands before he broke through to win a tight contest, pipping team-mate Senthil Kumar and Naresh Babu (RACR).
Chennai’s Ann Jennifer of Sparks Racing notched her second consecutive win in as many outings this season in the Girls (Stock, 165cc) championship race with ease while experienced Alisha Abdhullah (Team Alisha Abdullah) and Sruthi Nagarajan (Apex Racing Academy) finished second and third, respectively.
The day ended with another big crash, this time in the Girls race of the TVS One-Make Championship as RC Czimkhy from Thiruvananthapuram fell and was taken to the hospital with injuries. Her condition is said to be stable.
The results (Provisional – all 6 laps unless mentioned):
Super Sport Indian (165cc, 4 laps) – Race 1: 1. Rajiv Sethu (Idemitsu Honda Ten 10 Racing) (07min, 51.210sec); 2. Jagan Kumar (TVS Racing) (07:53.966); 3. Sarath Kumar (Idemitsu Honda Ten 10 Racing) (07:54.735).
Pro-Stock (165cc, 4 laps) – Race 1: 1. Anish Shetty (Idemitsu Honda Ten 10 Racing) (08: 36.405); 2. Senthil Kumar (Idemitsu Honda Ten 10 Racing) (08:36.455); 3. Naresh Babu (RACR) (08:37.318).
Girls (Novice, 165cc, 5 laps): 1. Ann Jennifer AS (Sparks Racing) (11:35.960); 2. Alisha Abdullah (Team Alisha Abdullah) (11:38.525); 3. Sruthi Nagarajan (Apex Racing) (11:38.649).
Idemitsu Honda India Talent Cup 2018 organised by MMSC – Open (CBR 250cc, 6 laps) Race 1: 1. Anish D Shetty (Hubbali) (12:39.833); 2. Abhishek Vasudev (Bengaluru) (12:39.963); 3. Amit Richard Toppo (Ranchi) (12:40.409). Novice (CBR 150cc) Race 1: 1. Mohamed Mukail (Chennai) (13:10.085); 2. Akshay V Murali (Kerala) (13:27.386); 3. Anandhu KK (Chennai) (13:38.297).
TVS One-Make Championship – Open (Apache R310) Race 1: 1. Amarnath Menon (Calicut) (12:22.067); 2. Vivek Pillai (Chennai) (12:22.529); 3. Deepak Ravikumar (Chennai) (12: 22.811). Novice (Apache 200) Race 1: 1. Karthik Mateti (Hyderabad) (13:41.697); 2. Anand R (Chennai) (13:52.409); 3. Venkatesan (Chennai) (13:58.514). Girls (Apache 200, 5 laps): 1. Ryhana Bee (Chennai) (11:46.202); 2. Ann Jennifer (Chennai) (11:47.052); 3. Priyanka Kochar (Mumbai) (12:21.837).