SIC Racing Team and rider Zulfahmi Khairuddin will part ways in the Moto2 World Championship after mutual agreement, effective immediately.
After four races in the 2018 season, Zulfahmi, the former Moto3 and World Supersport Championship rider, has made a decision – supported by the team – to not continue in the super competitive Moto2 championship.
“After the last race in Jerez, I find it very difficult for me to make any sort of improvement in my results since the start of the season. After careful thought and deep discussion with the team, I have decided that it was best for me to end my Moto2 career,” said Zulfahmi.
“I would like to convey my sincere gratitude to those involved, especially to SIC Chief Executive Officer Dato’ Razlan Razali and team manager Johan Stigefelt for their trust in giving me a chance to compete in the Moto2 championship.
“I am very sorry to the team and sponsors if this decision has come in an abrupt way,” he added.
Zulfahmi was announced as a replacement for Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah – who was signed to ride for MotoGP outfit Monster Yamaha Tech3 team – in February. Last season, Zulfahmi was riding in the World Supersport Championship under the banner of Orelac Racing Verdnatura for two seasons since 2016. His best result was finishing second in the Malaysian round in 2016.
Twice a podium finisher in the Moto3 class on a KTM in 2012, Zulfahmi made his Moto2 debut at the Qatar Grand Prix in March, finishing in 28th spot. At the Argentina Grand Prix, he finished 26th while at the Grand Prix of the Americas he finished 27th. At the recent round in Jerez, Spain, unfortunately, he did not managed to complete the race.
Despite ending his contract with SIC Racing Team, Zulfahmi will still be involved in racing in his current role as the mentor in the SIC-backed ‘Impian ke MotoGP’ programme – a programme to unearth raw talents in two wheels racing.
“I will focus my energy and experience towards guiding the young talents we have in the programme as we aim to create a viable pathway to the pinnacle of two-wheel racing, the MotoGP,” he said.
“To everybody at the SIC Racing Team, I say thank you for guiding and helping me this far.”
Meanwhile, SIC CEO Dato’ Razlan expressed his thanks to Zulfahmi and acknowledged the challenges in the super competitive Moto2 World Championship.
“First of all, I would like to thank Zulfahmi for his hard work and dedication after four rounds in the championship. I’m aware it was difficult for him to adapt to the super competitive Moto2 championship even with his experience in the World Supersport Championship.
“I’m also aware how difficult it was for him being a replacement for Hafizh. But at that time, Zulfahmi was the available option we had judging from his experience. Although he may not quite be ready physically and mentally to race in Moto2, he took the challenge in his stride and did give his best in each of the rounds unfortunately he was not able to improve his timing in the championship.
“We accept his decision but we will continue moving forward with the project. This is a long-term project that we have put forth when we initially decided to take Hafizh under our wings, the teams were handpicked by Hafizh himself and they will become a great team for the replacement rider.
“We will be exploring our options for Zulfahmi’s replacement as we hope to find someone with experience in Moto2 or has gone through the necessary trainings in the junior world championships. Moto2 is an aggressively challenging race in which we have to thoroughly analyse capable and available riders may it be local or international talent. We hope to make an announcement this week,” he added.