Newly crowned Asia Talent Cup Champion Veda Pratama made more history at Lusail on Saturday taking a record breaking eighth win before the 14-year-old Indonesian backed that up again on Sunday with his ninth victory of the season.
Pratama started from pole position and got the launch he would have been dreaming of. Almost immediately, the front quartet started to pull clear but a mistake at the final corner cost Ezawa time. This allowed Pratama, Ogiwara and Odaki to stride clear as the victory fight became a three-way affair.
As we often see in the ATC, the lead was changing lap by lap. Pratama, Ogiwara and Odaki all took several turns leading in what was a fascinating race before the final lap reared its head. As the trio approached Turn 16, Odaki slung his Honda up the inside of both Pratama – who was wide on the outside – and Ogiwara.
Drama then unfolded for Odaki who crashed out when the rear tyre let go on corner exit, allowing Pratama to power past Ogiwara to claim victory under the lights.
Ezawa was a lonely third place, the Japanese rider crossing the line almost six-seconds behind the leading duo, and with just under four-seconds ahead of the scrap unfolding further behind.
Despite starting from 17th place on the grid, young Aussie Marianos Nikolis picked up his best result of the season in P4, beating Riichi Takahira and Zen Mitani over the line.
Fellow Australian Levi Russo finished in 18th
ATC Qatar Race One Results
Hafizd Fahril RASYADAN
Jorge Raphael GADING
Levi Kwan RUSSO
Veda Pratama again led the field through turn one when the final 12-lap bout of season 2023 got underway on Sunday in Qatar ahead of Ryota Ogiwara and Jakkreephat Phuettisa. Marianos Nikolis was up to 12th by halfway around lap one while countryman Levi Russo was 17th.
Pratama saved a fast front end lose on turn 15 that saw him go very wide late on the opening lap which allowed Ogiwara, Odaki and Ezawa to get back on close terms with the ATC champ.
That leading quartet began to pull away froim Mitani, Takahiri and Hafiy, who in-turn stretched away from the next group consisting of Nikolis and Phuettisa, that pair were battling over eighth place four laps into the race.
By the time the race reached the halfway mark Pratama and Ogiwara had pulled away from Ezawa and Odaki, leaving that pair to fight over the final step on the rostrum.
A few laps later though Takahira pulled away from Mitani and Hafiy before then closing down Ezawa and Odaki to join that tussle over the final podium position.
Up front Pratama and Ogiwara continued to pull away from their pursuers by more than a second a lap. Ultimately the pair took the chequered flag in a photo finish that saw Pratama credited the win by one-hundredth of a second.
Amon Odaki claimed third place by a nose over Riichi Takahira and Shinya Ezawa, that taking the flag more than 15-seconds behind Pratama and Ogiwara.
A couple of seconds further back Zen Mitani took sixth place ahead of Farish Hafiy.
Marianos Nikolis won the battle of the next group to take an eighth place finish just over the 30-seconds behind the winner to cement his tenth place in the final championship standings on 67-points. Countryman Levi Russo finished the season with 38-points, equal 14th on the championship points table.
Pratama will celebrate his 15th birthday later this week and it will be a good one after the Indonesia amassed 256-points this season. That tally more than 100 ahead of the next best performer this season, Amon Odaki.
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