Honda has decided to go full throttle to expand Motorsport in India. They have announced the first Indian team ‘IDEMITSU Honda Racing Team’ by T Pro Ten10 for the 2018 season of Asia Road racing Championship (ARCC).
Their new vision:
Globally Honda has been synonymous with motorcycle racing. And now, they have decided to nurture and develop Indian riders of international stature. They made their motorsports debut in India in 2008. For the first ten years their vision was to provide a professional platform to the Indian riding enthusiasts. 2018 marks their biggest directional shift. Their focus has shifted to developing Indian riders to compete and excel at the international stage. This is the first time that Honda is promoting Indian riders in an Indian team in the international Motorsports arena.
Under this new direction, Mr. Minoru Kato – President & CEO, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt. Ltd. today announced Honda’s latest initiative which kicks-off with the start of 2018 motorsport season this weekend, “Honda 2Wheelers India is proud to announce that for the first time, an Indian team will be participating solo in the 23rd season of Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) 2018. It is our next step towards realizing the dream to develop iconic Indian riders for both only national but more so international racing championships. My best wishes to the ‘IDEMITSU Honda Racing India’ by T Pro Ten10 and the two riders Rajiv Sethu and Anish D. Shetty. The motorsport excitement will continue in 2018. Honda will announce a slew of new programs to promote and expand professional motorsport in India.”
Speaking on Indian riders skilling up and going global, Mr. Prabhu Nagaraj, Vice President – Customer Service, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India Pvt. Ltd. said, “Honda India is making gradual and consistent progress in motorsport and our boys going international is great for the sport. As part of Honda’s rider development program, two young talented Indian riders Sarath & Rajiv will be seen in action in Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) this year. We are extremely delighted to extend learning curve of Rajiv while giving debut international exposure to the promising rider Anish. We are confident that they will put up a great show and supporting dreams for many more young riders to make a career in racing. With the ARRC returning to India later this year, this will be another great opportunity for the riders as well as the motorsport fans in India.”
Honda Motorcycles and Scooter India (HMSI) will take care of the overall team management. IDEMITSU Lube India Pvt. Ltd. will be sponsoring India’s first ever team at the ARCC. Ten10 Racing Pvt. Ltd. will handle the team’s rider management. T-Pro Innovation, a professional Japanese team will be in charge of the technical aspects such as performance enhancement, modifications, data analysis, maintenance and repairs. Following are the profiles of the riders:
|IDEMITSU Honda Racing India’ by T Pro Ten10|
|80||Rajiv Sethu||20||Asia Production 250cc|
|81||Anish D. Shetty|
|CBR600RR||Taiga Hada||23||SuperSports 600cc|
Qualifying 16th position in the inaugural round of the 2018 ARRC season, Rajiv Sethu, the IDEMITSU Honda Racing team rider said “This is my second year at the ARRC, I had an amazing debut and learnings last year. By providing me with this global platform, Honda 2Wheelers has given me wings to achieve my dream of becoming an international Indian motorsport rider. Taking learnings from 2017 season, I have worked diligently this year. I am very excited to be a part of the first Indian team and aim to deliver my best this year for my team and my country.”
Also making his debut in Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC), Anish D Shetty said, “I am elated and honored to be a part of the historical first all Indian team at the 23rd season of ARRC. For any Indian racer, getting global exposure is a big opportunity. Honda 2Wheelers India has made my dream come true. I look forward to ride and learn from the most experienced racers in the world. 2018 season for me is all about improving my riding and presence in international races. This is my first exposure in ARRC and it’s a big deal for me. I will do my best to make my team and country proud.”
ARCC 2018 details and Calendar:
ARRC is a part of the production-based category of racing which is similar to the Supersport World Championship. It consists of 3 open-make classes (SuperSports 600cc, Asia Production 250cc and Underbone 130cc) and 2 single-make development classes. It features Modified versions of production motorcycles available to the public.
The 2018 season of FIM ARRC will feature 64 riders from 8 Asian countries (Australia, Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines and India) competing in a 6 round championship.
Round 1 of 2018 ARRC kicks off in Thailand (2nd to 4th March). Adelaide, Australia will be hosting the next race (19th to 22nd April). Japan’s iconic Suzuka circuit will be the third battleground (1st to 3rd June). Then the Indian contingent will be racing on their home-ground as ARRC will return to MMRT, Chennai (3rd to 5th August). Indonesia will be the venue for the penultimate round (12th to 14th October). Thailand will play host for the season finale (November 30 to December 2, 2018).