In the world of motorsports, the journey from a passionate rider to a racing hero is a challenging one. It is not just about the thrill of the race, but also the responsibility of carrying the nation's flag to foreign circuits.
These riders do not just compete locally, they brave international races, putting their skills and determination to the test.
As Gian Carlo Mauricio from the Yamaha Philippines racing team emphasizes, "Bilang isang Yamaha rider, nakaka-proud. Masaya dahil nakakapag-compete kami. Binibigyan kami ng opportunity na makapag-compete sa ibang bansa at ilaban ang bandera natin." (As Yamaha riders, it is something to be proud of. It brings happiness because we get to compete. We are given the opportunity to compete in other countries and represent our flag.)
Let us take a close look at the journey of these Filipino racing heroes, their recent performance in the Asia Road Racing Championship, and what lies ahead on their path to glory.
Race your flag
Yamaha Motor Philippines' "Race Your Flag" event held at Philippine Sports Expo in Okada Manila's Crystal Pavilion was a celebration of the motorsports spirit. It celebrated the commitment of Filipino riders who compete for the nation, and it served as a platform for these dedicated racers to showcase their talents and to inspire Filipinos. The event featured top Filipino racers like 'The Flash' Gian Carlo Mauricio, 'Rocketboy' April King Mascardo, 'The Hitman' John Emerson Inguito, and 'The Wonderboy' Mckinley Kyle Paz.
Heart of racing
What drives these athletes is more than just the desire for victory, it is the sense of responsibility and the thrill of representing our country. The Philippines has made a mark in the world of motorcycle racing, and Yamaha Motor Philippines has played a role in nurturing talent and fostering a culture of excellence.
The motorcycles designed for racing, such as the Sniper155, and the YZF-R3, YZF-R7 and YZF-R1, are machines created for those who are after the adrenaline rush that comes with high-speed racing. These bikes have become companions of Filipino racers, enabling them to pursue their dreams on the track.
However, the journey to becoming a racing hero is not just about the bikes, it is about the commitment, discipline, and hard work of the athletes.
As Gian Mauricio puts it, "Itong sports na 'to para sakin, hindi lang siya basta passion ko. Kumbaga naging parang work ko na rin 'to. 'Pag may event ang Yamaha, nagtuturo kami, nagiging coach kami." (This sport, for me, is not just a passion, it is like a job. Whenever Yamaha has an event, we become teachers, we become coaches.)
Triumph in Japan
The Yamaha Racing Team has shown its prowess in the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) held in Japan last June. John Inguito of the 4S1M Evo Yamaha racing team secured the team's first championship trophy in the competition by dominating the race 2 of round 3 of the Underbone 150cc category.
Inguito expressed his elation, saying, "Sobrang saya, at karangalan sa Pilipinas kasi nanalo kami ng first place sa Japan." (It is a tremendous joy and honor for the Philippines because we won first place in Japan.)
This victory marked a historic moment for the Philippine team, and it serves as a testament to the dedication and skill of Filipino riders.
Challenges in Indonesia
The road to success is not without its challenges. In the recent Asia Road Racing Championship events in Indonesia last August, riders April King Mascardo and Gian Carlo Mauricio faced tough competition and encountered setbacks. Despite their determination, they are up against some of the best racers in Asia.
With two rounds remaining in the championship, the road ahead is challenging, but these racers are not giving up. April King Mascardo currently sits at 13th overall, while Gian Carlo Mauricio is striving to climb the ranks from 23rd.
Their next race in China in November is an opportunity to showcase their skills and determination.
The 'wonderboy' in Europe
Aside from the Asian events, we also have a representative, the first and only Filipino who is competing at the FIM JuniorGP World Championship in Europe. 'The Wonderboy' Mckinley Kyle Paz, who happens to be the youngest among the Yamaha racers, made a comeback after a brief hiatus due to a hand injury. Competing against Europe's best riders is no easy feat, but Kyle remains steadfast in his goal of racing for the Philippines. His journey continues with the next race in Spain on October 8.
As we look ahead, Filipino motorsports fans may anticipate more thrilling races and events.
The "Race Your Flag" campaign invites everyone to be a part of this journey, to support the Philippine racing team, and to share in the pride of representing the Philippines on the international stage.
For updates on our racing heroes and their upcoming events, visit Yamaha's official website, Facebook, TikTok, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube pages.
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