KUALA LUMPUR, July 4 — MalaysianMoto2 rider Hafizh Syahrin Abdullah hopes the European Union’s (EU) travel ban will not hinder his chances of participating in the MotoGP World Championshipswhich is set to resume at the Jerez circuit in Spain on July 19.
Hafizh Syahrin said he was now awaiting permission to leave for Spain after handing over the required details and documentation to his team, Angel Nieto.
“I hope to hear something good from Europe so that we can fly to Spain to continue with the championship. If we (national riders) can’t fly and the championship goes on, we will be disappointed,” said the rider who has previously competed in the MotoGP’s Premier Class for two seasons.
This season’s competition was suspended in March following the race in Qatar, due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
Yesterday, Moto3 rider Khairul Idham Pawi failed to leave for Spain due to the travel ban which sees the EU only allowing citizens from 15 countries to enter Europe. Malaysia is not included in the list.
Hafizh Syahrin, who was met during Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Reezal Merican Naina Merican’s visit to the Sepang International Circuit (SIC) yesterday, said he was not made aware of the travel restriction prior to this.
“I was shocked to hear that KIP (Khairul Idham) could not leave for Europe because of the (travel ban) announcement by the EU. Perhaps we did not receive the news (that) we need to have a letter of approval from the authority involved (the Spanish government) to go there,” he said.
Meanwhile, the 26-year-old rider from Ampang is gearing up for motorsports events to be held in the country since being suspended for nearly four months due to Covid-19.
He is optimistic that the competitions can be held soon with the commitment shown by SIC and the Motorsports Association of Malaysia (MAM) in preparing the standard operating procedure (SOP) in accordance with the guidelines set by the Ministry of Health and the National Security Council.
“We know the international races will be held without spectators, so we are hoping for something similar (here). We as motorsports athletes can’t wait to throttle the machines,” said the rider who is also known as ‘El Pescao’. — Bernama