The opening round of the Rotax Asia trophy took place at the Sepang Karting Circuit in Malaysia on the 20-21st of January. The event proved as a critical test event for several competitors looking towards the Rotax Asia Festival to be held at the same track just one week later.
In the MicroMax category Felix Chang of Stratos RL dominated proceedings. The final started with a bit of a scuffle behind him, quickly resulting in a sizeable lead. One of the pre-race favorites Jamie White dropped out after his chain came off during a brief battle on the opening lap. Mason Kwong did his best to hold on to the leader, but eventually dropped to 1.7 seconds off at the end of the race. Japanese driver Kuryu Kyotake put in a solid drive to finish in 3rd place, but was disqualified post-race due to a technical infringement.
The Mini Max category consisted of 8 drivers, with John Han grabbing a decent gap after the opening lap as the drivers behind him battled. Poomsit Klombunjong kept the gap to 1 second at the finish, almost matching Han’s fastest lap of the race. Poomsit’s pace in the final wasn’t a match to the winner’s, with the eventual gap extending to almost 5 seconds. An early threat for 2nd place from Peerapongpan Sutumo didn’t hold, with the top 3 holding station to the end. Axle Nocom in turn held on for 4th place ahead of Patthapol Kaewanjanasat.