This weekend sees MIE Racing in action at Buddh International Circuit, where the squad is competing in the inaugural Grand Prix of India, in the Moto3 class, with the support of sponsor PETRONAS and the Vision Track team. The team’s two wildcard riders, Danial Shahril and local hero Kadai Yaseen Ahamed, were back on track today for the third and final practice, during which they built on what they already learned during Friday’s opening practice sessions.

On one side of the garage and having made some final set-up adjustments with his technicians, Shahril was able to improve on his best of yesterday by a full two seconds, setting a 2’01.898 with which he placed twenty-sixth. Danial moved on to the afternoon’s qualifying session, in which he made five laps of the track and was able to shave another six tenths off his time to close with a 2’01.257. He qualified in twenty-fifth position, which translates into a ninth row start for Sunday’s race.

On the other side of the garage, Indian rider Ahamed worked hard during FP3. Despite improving his feeling with the bike, he couldn’t ultimately lower his lap time sufficiently to be able to compete in qualifying, and so it was decided by the FIM Stewards that he would not continue after the third and final practice. Making his debut appearance at the top level of the sport was always going to be challenging, something the courageous Indian rider understood as he took to the track for the first time on Friday. Ahamed was nevertheless keen to accept the challenge, particularly considering the importance of the weekend, with the MotoGP World Championship competing on Indian soil for the first time. In taking part – the most important value that sport can transmit – the local rider hopes that he has contributed to promoting motorcycle racing as a sport in his country and instilled a ‘never give up’ attitude, encouraging people to challenge themselves, whatever the circumstances. Competing on the international stage for the first time, Ahamed has had the chance to learn from, and collaborate with, a raft of highly trained professionals and is very grateful for the experience.

Danial Shahril

“I improved a lot during FP3, by two seconds compared to yesterday’s second practice, so I was happy with that. I was able to lower my time further in qualifying but not by as much as I’d hoped to. It was a little difficult because I had a problem with the rear brake and also struggled with the wind, which was stronger than in the morning. It was not easy through the turns, but I did my best and will now focus on preparing for tomorrow’s race. Wish me luck!”

Kadai Yaseen Ahamed

“I felt a little better in FP3 and definitely learned a great deal across every session but was unfortunately not able to do enough in terms of speed to be able to continue on to qualifying. I am nevertheless very grateful for this fantastic experience, and hope that in taking on what I knew was going to be a very challenging weekend, I have inspired others to push themselves to do new and exciting things. In competing in the very first Indian MotoGP round, I also hope to have encouraged other young people in India to ride and race. I can only thank PETRONAS and the MIE Racing Vision Track team for having given me this amazing opportunity to compete in Moto3, and at the very first championship round to be held in my own country, thank-you all.”