Singapore, 15 March 2011 – It was a remarkable start to the 2011 kart racing season as Dash Racing’s drivers James Pull and Syazwan Mohd Noor both topped their categories (MicroMax and Junior respectively) in the opening round of the 2011 Rotax Asia Zone Challenge and Rotax Malaysia Challenge championships. With his training efforts coming into good effect, 11-year-old Pull had a very successful weekend at Speedway PLUS Circuit in Malaysia to clinch top honours and maximum Championship points.
“It was a fantastic debut for Dash Racing and I am so happy for the team as well as for my team-mate Syazwan for a great start to the 2011 season. I have to thank John King, Sem Lee and the rest of the team for the superb job done,” said Pull at the end of the weekend.
Qualifying in sixth, Pull started Heat 1 in this position. He got up to third at the last corner of the last lap but unfortunately got entangled in an incident which left him 12th. Starting Heat 2 in sixth again, Pull was quick to move up the field and was battling for second place against several contenders. He eventually managed to take second place after eight laps and finished 0.4 second ahead of the driver in third.
Combining the results of both heats, Pull started in sixth for the pre-final but was up to third by the second lap and second by the fourth lap. Drama unfolded on the track in the early laps but Pull managed to stay clear of the battle for third and instead focused on chasing down the race leader. With five laps remaining of the 15-lap pre-final, Pull took the lead and held on to win.
The final saw Pull start from pole position but run to second for the first few laps. He worked hard and took the lead on the seventh lap, where he remained for the rest of the 15-lap race, finally finishing 1.5 seconds ahead of the second-placed driver.
Team principal John King said, “James drove fantastic races all weekend and fully deserved his win. His improvement in fitness and strength is reflected in his performance. The consistency shown during testing and also over the race weekend was the key to winning.”
Driving for Dash Racing in Asia, Pull will also be driving for 2005 CIK-FIA Karting World Champion Oliver Oakes’ team when he travels to Italy and the United Kingdom to participate in a number of events later this year. His first European appearance of the year will be at Round 1 of the Italian CSAI Karting Championship in Naples, Italy on 2 to 3 April.
2010 was Pull’s first time competing in the full season of the Yamaha SL Cup Malaysia and the Asian Karting Open Championship. Eventually finishing second overall in both series, Pull gained tremendous racing experience and he even led both Championships at certain points of the season. He also headed to Italy at the end of the summer as part of his development programme and participated at a WSK Master Series race.