Date posted on December 3, 2019
As the Filipino athletes are clinching medals and proudly representing the Philippines at the 30th Southeast Asian games being currently held in the country, some motorcycle racers competed and brought honour to Filipinos in international race events. McKinley Kyle Paz, Masato Fernando and Amber Torres of UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines were in Buriram, Thailand for the seventh and final round of the FIM Asia Road Racing Championship battled at the 4.554-kilometer Chang International Circuit from November 29 to December 1. The three were contenders in the highly competitive UB150 class of the ARRC.
Both races of the final UB150 round had 8 laps. Paz was second in the overall standings heading into the final round. Despite the pressure and race bike issues, Paz started in P6 and finished in sixth place as well in Race 1 of the final leg put him in the lead with only two points ahead of Malaysian teammate Muhammad Akid Aziz racing for UMA Maju Motor racing team. Race 2 was an all out fray for the title and Paz finished in sixteenth place, gaining no points but in an unpredictable turn of events, his championship rival Muhammad Akid Aziz was not able to finish the race and scored no points as well. Paz was hailed as the 2019 ARRC UB150 title to the delight of his team and legions of Filipino supporters.
McKinley Kyle Paz with his mother and Racing Boy and UMA Racing Philippine dealer Mr. Bob Lu
McKinley “The Wonder Boy” Paz had a remarkable season starting off with a win and third place finish in the opening round in Sepang, Malaysia. He also won Race 1 of the fifth round held in Zhuhai, China. It was a tough campaign for Paz who had ups and downs in the series. In the end the talent of the 18-year-old and the effort of his team UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines paid off. This feat was historic as Paz became the first ever Filipino ARRC overall championship title holder. Paz has been racing internationally for years now after emerging as one of the top riders in the Philippines. He started in pocketbike racing and is one of the riders who again brought the Philippines recognition in the Asian racing scene.
Masato Fernando dubbed as “The Chairman” got a podium finish in Race 1 of the finals after he had a blistering third place finish coming from 21st position at the starting grid. In Race 2, Fernando had a chance to lead the race before eventually ending up at 20th position. Overall, he placed eighth in the rankings. This was the first ARRC UB150 full season participation of Fernando he was the Race 2 winner of the season opener back in March.
Fernando got the third place in Race 1 of the ARRC UB150 finals
For the final round, UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines had a wildcard rider in young Amber Torres who is one of the highly skilled Filipino racers. He is being groomed to be one of UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines’ UB150 riders for 2020. Torres bravely took on the challenge and valiantly carried the Philippine flag in the final round amidst the intense battle of a 31-rider grid. It is the first time for Torres in the UB150 class and he savoured the qualifying and Race 1 experience despite the setbacks. Unfortunately in Race 2, Torres crashed at Turn 7 on the third lap and was injured. He received medical attention at the Medical Center and was then transferred to Buriram hospital. Treatment continued for him in the Intensive Care Unit. Prayers are pouring in for the young rider’s recovery.
Amber Torres supported by his father
ARRC UB150 final round race winners were Malaysian Ahmad Fazli Sham of ONEXOX TKKR SAG Racing Team in Race 1 and Indonesian Richard Richie Taroreh of Proliner 549 KABOCI Racing Team in Race 2. 2:00.483s best lap time in Race 1 was courtesy of Fernando while Malaysian Muhammad Fitri Ashraff Razali of Cardinals Racing Team submitted Race 2’s 2:00.311s best lap time.
Yamaha Sniper 150 underbones were used by Paz, Fernando and Torres. It was victorious first full season participation for UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines which got third place in the overall team standings. Its sister team UMA Racing-Yamaha Maju Motor Asia Team was second overall. While Paz took the overall title, UMA Racing-Yamaha Maju Motor Asia’s Muhammad Akid Aziz and Muhammad Haziq Muhammad Fairues placed second and third in the overall rankings.
UMA Racing-Yamaha Philippines’ McKinley Kyle Paz (1) and UMA Racing Yamaha Maju Motor Asia Team’s Muhammad Akid (2) and Muhammad Hazik (3)
Yamaha Motor Philippines continues to hone champion racers in its local Yamaha GP series and now successfully conquered the Asian racing scene with the historic victory of Paz.