LENGGONG: The provision of more circuits as well as the planned and organised cooperation among motocross organisers are needed in an effort to unearth more backup racers in the country.
National motocross rider Khairul Afif Ghazali, 26, said those two factors could further develop the sport, which will then have a huge potential to produce more racers for the international arena, including in the MotoGP category.
“Previously, we had the Motocross Series in several states but they were all halted due to the Movement Control Order (to curb the spread of COVID-19). Now there aren’t that many motocross events and circuits, but most are one-off tournaments.
“When more circuits are built, it will give racers the opportunity to train and compete, thus help produce more riders,” he said when met by Bernama after he had competed in the Mok Cun Track Day 2022 motocross championships at Felda Lawin Utara, about 85 kilometres (km) from Ipoh recently.
He said that more races should be organised in every state so as to create diverse, yet unique, challenges so that every race would provide a different experience for all the riders.
He is now focusing on competing in motocross events nationwide with the Benchos Motosport Racing Team while also giving it a go in SuperMoto, which also has a big fan-base in Malaysia.
In the Mok Cun Track Day 2022, Khairul Afif came in third overall in the MX Open Final category behind L. Darwin (Negeri Sembilan) and Airil Zakaria (Johor).
About 3,000 spectators were treated to some sizzling action by the 600 racers, including from Thailand, who competed in 14 categories in the biennial championships.
Attention was also focused on Perak rider Nor Shamira Nor Azahar, 27, who beat eight others to win the Women’s MX category, before steeling herself to compete against the men in the MX Novice event, where she failed to finish on the podium.
“I took up the sport since I was 12 because I was keen and my family supported me. My father, Nor Azahar Ismail, who is also a rider, trains me. This sport requires more circuits and tournaments so that it will give us an avenue for training, exposure and self-preparation, both physically and mentally,” she said.
Nor Shamira, who works as a bank manager in Ipoh, is determined to divide her time between work and motocross as she chases her dream of becoming a well-known national rider.
Meanwhile, Lenggong Member of Parliament Datuk Seri Dr Shamsul Anuar Nasarah said the circuit here would be further expanded to enable more championshpis to be held, especially in a bid to unearth riders to represent the state and the country. – Bernama