Team KAGAYAMA SUZUKI Asia has been formed to race in the Asia Road Race Championship (ARRC) with Yukio Kagayama spearheading the team as General Manager. In its 2nd year in the Championship, the team continues with #41 Noriyuki Haga, and #98 Patis Chooprathet.
Noriyuki Haga, who scored 43 World Superbike race victories in an illustrious career, has raced with Team KAGAYAMA in the prestigious Suzuka 8 Hours for the last three years, all finishing on the podium. In his second year with the squad, he will continue to develop the Suzuki GSX-R600, as well as help his teammate become a competitive rider in the world championship.
Patis Chooprathet, is a 16 year-old rider from Thailand. He is the first rider from SUZUKI ASIAN CHALLENGE (SAC) to step up to a higher category. Patis finished 2nd in ranking last season in SAC, but the Kagayama found his potential in the try-out for the Supersports team, and invited him to join for the 2016 season.
Under Kagayama’s leadership, the one-make SUZUKI ASIA CHALLENGE (SAC) series continues this year in conjunction with ARRC. The series is a single platform championship for Suzuki FU150s and a rider development program for young Asian riders to eventually progress into MotoGP™.
Suzuki’s long-time MotoGP, WSB, BSB and All Japan Superbike Championship rider Kagayama said “I am happy that we are able to continue our 600 squad. I thank Haga for what he did last year, unselfishly concentrating on acquiring data and developing the GSX-R600. I also look forward to Patis. His attitude toward racing is what every rider should look up to. I am sure he will be one of the greatest riders from Asia in the future.”