Hyderabad’s Md Samrul Zubair (Race’ists Motorcycle Club) snatched the pole position in the novice (Stock 165cc) category as the Rolon Round of the Indian National Motorcycle Racing Championship 2022 that commenced at the Kari Motor Speedway on Friday.

Zubair, a 22-year-old business management student, came up with the best lap of one minute 25.963 seconds to qualify for pole position for Saturday’s race. After finishing third in the morning free practice session, Zubair gave an improved performance in the evening’s qualifying session.

This is my third season in the national championship. I had been finishing in the top-10 earlier and had a podium in the final round last year. I am happy with my performance today, but hope to do better in the race tomorrow, Zubair said.

Filling the front row are second-placed Varun Nanjundegowda (Axor Sparks Racing, 01:26.078) from Mysuru and Hyderabad’s Vignesh Goud (Race’ists Motorcycle Club, 01:26.080).

Earlier in the day, the Petronas TVS Racing team had plenty to cheer about as their riders, Thailand’s guest rider Voropong Malahuan (Pro-stock 301-400cc Open) and reigning national champion Jagan Kumar (Pro-stock 165cc Open) topped the time sheets in their respective categories during the free practice sessions.

Malahuan clocked the best lap of one minute 13.873 seconds while Jagan timed 01:17.933 during his flying lap around the 2.3-km long circuit.

Malahuan led a 1-2 for Petronas TVS Racing as he outpaced team-mate K Y Ahamed (01:14.150) while veteran Rajini Krishnan (RACR Castrol Power), the defending champion in this category astride a Yamaha R3, was third quickest in 01:14.201.

Jagan edged out his arch-rival Rajiv Sethu (01:18.246) of the Idemitsu Honda SK69 Racing with KY Ahamed (01:18.365), also of Petronas TVS Racing, third fastest.

Lani Zena Fernandez (RACR Castrol Power) topped the free practice session in the girls (stock 165cc) category clocking 01:28.322, ahead of Apex Racing’s Aditi Krishnan (01:29.304) and Jagathishree Kumaresan (01:30.454) of Pacer Yamaha.

The results qualifying (best laps), National championship novice (stock 165cc):

1. Md Samiul Zubair (Team Race’ists Motorcycle Club, Hyderabad) (01min, 25.963secs); 2. Varun Nanjundegowda (Axor Sparks Racing, Mysuru) (01:26.078); 3. Vignesh Goud (Team Race’ists Motorcycle Club, Hyderabad) (01:26.080).

Petronas TVS One-Make Championship Apache 310 RR (Open):

1. Navaneeth Kumar (Puducherry) (01:17.788); 2. Jagadeesh N (Bengaluru) (01:17.865); 3. Alwin Sundar (Chennai) (01:17.885).

Girls (Apache RTR 200):

1. Aditi Krishnan (Bengaluru) (01:28.787); 2. Renuka Gajendran (Bengaluru) (01:30.226); 3. Riya Rohatgi (Pune) (01:32.377).

Idemitsu Honda India Talent Cup CBR 150:

1. Siddesh Sawant (Kolhapur) (01:28.854); 2. Shyam Babu (Chennai) (01:30.061); 3. Harshith V Bogar (Bengaluru) (01:31.175).

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