Team Aprilia-Grandstar’s very own Dashi Watanabe once again bested other drivers as he zigzagged through the Clark International Speedway during the sixth round of the 2014 Pirelli Philippine Superbike Championship held last October 5.
Watanabe went into the last round with a 16 point lead over Team Ducati’s Rainiel Resuello, meaning he need only finish the race to take everything home. However, Resuello managed to lead the qualifiers with a time of 2:09.474, placing him first on the pole; Watanabe at second; and Jussi Hoika at third.
The 10-lap race saw drivers zooming through a peculiar track, with a wet and slippery east course and a stone-dry west course. Resuello managed to keep Watanabe at bay for most of the race, until the latter managed to take the lead moments before they crossed the checkered flag – 0.549 seconds separating first placer Watanabe from Resuello, with Marvin Mangulabnan finishing at third.
This finish nabbed Watanabe his fifth win out of six legs, automatically naming him as the 2014 Pirelli Philippine Superbike Open Class champion, as well as the Golden Wheel Awards’ Rider of the Year.
Rizaldy Canare managed to take home the Intermediate Class title despite an early crash resulting in a dead last pole position. Jussi Hoika narrowly missed the top spot with a 2 point deficit.
For the Novice Class, Lawrence Macalinao placed first; Jericho Arnaiz finished at second; and Tracy Soyangco finished third but still ended up with the Novice Class trophy – his accumulated lead proving too much to be overcame by a single lowly podium position.
FDR Underbone King Championship
The 150cc Open Class saw Herbert Lopez and John Emerson Inguito tied heading into the sixth round, with 109 points apiece. Though Tracy Soyangco of Team NHK-Racewell placed first, the focus was clearly on the neck and neck battle of Inguito and Lopez, with the former finishing second with only a 0.053 second lead over the latter. This clutch performance earned Inguito 131 points and the 150cc Open Class title; Lopez placed second with 129 points; and Niño Fabian was third overall with 98 points.
Vrei Ar Suba’s dominating performances in the previous rounds enabled him to go in to the 115cc Open Class final race as the undisputed champion. The 115cc Novice Class saw Aldeine Valencia with a dominating 92-point lead, well ahead of anyone in his group.
FDR Philippine Scooter Racing Championship
Torrential rain poured down the 180cc Automatic Scooter Class racers, the heat ending with Masato Fernando being declared as champ ahead of Paul Mark Doblada and Joshua Reuben Tan in second and third, respectively.
The 130cc Automatic Scooter Class ended with McKinley Kyle Paz, Robert Espiritu, and Justinne Tolentino tied with 110 points each. Meanwhile, the 160cc Automatic Scooter Class saw Aljon Valencia taking home the championship with his 144 points.
Team NHK-Racewell took two podium places in the MotoIR, with Kenneth Torres and Herbert Lopez finishing with gold and bronze respectively, the silver being owned by Paul Mark Doblada. Gio Adriano won the MotoIR2; Gino Tayag won the MTRT Club Race; McKinley Kyle Paz took the MTRT Cup 115cc Scooter Class and Honda Dash Cup; and EJ Sobretodo won the Honda Beat Cup.
The 2014 Superbikes, Underbone King, and Scooter Racing Championship series are sanctioned by the Underbone and Scooter Racing Association (USRA) and the Superbikes Racing Association (SBRA) It is presented by Petronas and sponsored by Pirelli, FDR Tires, and KYT Helmets. Media partners include Inside Racing, Motorcycle Magazine, Motorcycle World, and Motorsiklo Xklusibo.
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