After Yonny Hernandez in Sepang, it will be Malaysian Hafizh Syahrin on the Team Tech3 Yamaha M1 for the upcoming tests in Thailand. If the Colombian was just a temporary substitute for Folger, who decided not to race in 2018, the three days of tests in Buriram will be a proper examination for Syahrin, in line to race for the entire season with the French team.
“I’m really happy and honoured to have the possibility to have Hafizh Syahrin with us for the test in Buriram - team manager Hervé Poncharal stated - As everybody knows, since Jonas Folger decided that he couldn’t race in 2018, we’ve been looking for who could be the right replacement rider. Following the Sepang test, we had many meetings and it has been decided that Hafizh Syahrin would be a very good choice for the Monster Yamaha Tech3 team”.
“Right now, it is only three days, but I am more than convinced that Hafizh is going to show us what he can do - he continues - He is young, only 23 years old, has already done some podiums in the Moto2 class, which is not easy. He ended inside the top 10 in the final ranking of Moto2 in 2017, which is a huge achievement, because I know how tough this category is. As I always said, to have a young rider is much more meaningful for the team than having an already established rider. Let’s do the test, I’m already full of excitement and optimism and really soon after Buriram we will take a final decision.”
Logically, Hafizh Syahrin is over the moon, going down in history at Buriram as the first Malaysia to ever ride a MotoGP bike.
“First of all, I want to thank Hervé Poncharal for giving me this opportunity and of course the entire Yamaha Tech3 team - he says - I’ll try to do my very best during these three days in Thailand. For me, it’s a dream coming true to be able to ride a MotoGP machine. I have to admit, that I’m overly excited to get this chance. I hope I can be fast from the word go to show everybody what I’m capable of.”
It will be a true baptism of fire for him.
“I’m incredibly happy and I’m looking forward to being in Buriram, because it will be the very first time ever I can ride a MotoGP bike. I know that I have to learn a lot aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1 and I’m eager to try to understand how the team works as I know that they are very experienced, so I want to make the most of their input. During this winter, I trained a lot, so I hope this hard work pays off and I can’t wait to get this test started” he concludes.