Making his debut this weekend (10 – 12 March) at the Idemitsu Super Turbo Championship in Thailand is Hayden Haikal. The young driver will be racing for Wing Hin Motorsports and will lead Malaysia’s challenge at the Chang International Circuit in Buriram.
18-year-old Hayden is in only his 2nd year of competing internationally and in Thailand. He will be competing in a Toyota Vios, in the D4 class for cars with normally aspirated engines of up to 1,550 cc. The Wing Hin Motorsports Vios is a super touring variant which is fitted with a 5-speed sequential transmission. Last year, Hayden was crowned the overall first runner-up in another Thai championship i.e. Thailand Super Eco Saloon Car Series.
“I’m extremely honored to have been entrusted by the team to lead their charge in Thailand. They’ve always wanted to compete in Thailand and here we are. It’s my second year competing in Thailand, it is a brand new series and it is extremely competitive. The team however, is confident that we can make an impact,” said Hayden who will be racing against a field of 22 other drivers. “It’s too early to say what kind of competition we will be up against because the rest of the drivers are relatively unknown to us but we will certainly be gunning for a win if not a top three finish at our first race weekend.”
Rounds 1 and 2 of the Idemitsu Super Turbo Championship will involve a 9-lap race on Saturday and an 11-lap race on Sunday, around the 4.554 km Chang circuit. This championship is made up of 6 rounds. Rounds 3 and 4 are scheduled for 19 – 21 May while the final 2 rounds (Rounds 5 & 6) will be held 16 – 18 June 2023. All of the championship’s races will be run at the Chang International Circuit.
“Chang International Circuit is a very high speed circuit. You can’t afford to make a mistake because if you do, the other drivers will be on you immediately. It has an extremely long straight and a 90 degree corner which I feel is the most challenging,” said the young race who won at the circuit on 3 occasions last year.
“We also got our work cut out for us because we’ve had no prior testing going into the race weekend. I have not yet driven this souped up version of the Toyota Vios, although I finished second overall in the Yaris at last year’s S1K and the performance is somewhat similar. I’ll have to make this transition very quickly and I will be banking on my years of driving in the Vios Challenge to come in handy,” he added.