After the historic win of Team Suzuki Pilipinas at the 3rd round of the Suzuki Asian Challenge (SAC) in the Asia Road Racing Championship (ARRC) in Suzuka, Japan, the team finally got the chance to share their success to the motorsports community during a press conference and victory party hosted by Suzuki Philippines Inc. aptly called as Success on the Circuit: Team Suzuki Pilipinas Victory Party. The event gathered the movers and shakers of the country’s motorsports scene at the Platinum Room of F1 Hotel Manila in Bonifacio Global City, Taguig on June 16, 2016.
Together with Team Suzuki Pilipinas riders EJ Sobretodo, April King Mascardo and Mario Borbon as well as their mechanics – Manuel Chien, Herbert Lopez and Bobby Mencias and and Team Manager – Mr. Noel Villapando, Suzuki Philippines, headed by the company’s President himself, Mr. Hiroshi Suzuki, Managing Director Mr. Norminio Mojica, Marketing Head Mr. Monch Bontogon and staff, with the National Motorcycle Sports and Safety Association (Philippines) (NAMSSA) and Suzuki’s valued media partners relived how history was made at the Suzuka racetrack. There was an unspoken emotion that went through the whole venue when the screen showed the Philippine national anthem being played during the awarding ceremonies of race 1 in Japan. Everyone was moved by the event and cheered for the success of the whole Filipino nation.
Team Suzuki Pilipinas’ accomplishments in Japan marked three firsts in the history of motorsports in the country – Sobretodo’s first place win is the first for a Filipino in the ARRC which is an international race sanctioned by the FIM; Borbon’s second place win in the same event made it the first 1-2 finish for the Philippines in an international racing competition and Mascardo securing the pole position is another first for a Filipino in an international race. Mascardo is also the current record holder for the fastest lap in Suzuki Asian Challenge in Suzuka, 5.3 seconds faster than last year’s pole.
In his speech, Suzuki Philippines’ President Mr. Hiroshi Suzuki expressed his gratitude to everyone who made the success of the team possible – the riders, the mechanics, the national sports association and the media who for their non-stop coverage during last three rounds. Managing Director Mr. Norminio Mojica also gave his warmest congratulations to the team and wished them good luck for the last remaining rounds. Suzuki Philippines is very pleased with the performances of the riders especially on how they have improved since they first joined the SAC series last year (Mascardo and Borbon are second-timers). This was proven by the updates of Motorcycle Marketing Head Mr. Monch Bontogon expressing that Team Suzuki Pilipinas already outweighed their performance during the 2015 Suzuki Asian Challenge.
Amidst the questions in the Q&A portion, what rose were more on advice and techniques on how the The team will once again face the Suzuki Asian Challenge racetrack on August 5 to 7 at Sentul, Indonesia for the 4th round. Final race is on December 2 to 4 at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram, Thailand. Continue to follow the story of Team Suzuki Pilipinas by checking out Suzuki Philippines and SAC fan pages – facebook.com/SuzukiBikersFed and facebook.com/SuzukiAsianChallenge respectively.