With Malaysian FIM CEV Moto2 racer Adam Norrodin heading to a wildcard ride with Petronas Sprinta Racing Team at Silverstone British Grand Prix on the coming weekend, paultan.org got an exclusive 30 minutes with Adam as well as Zulfhami Khairuddin, team manager of SIC Racing Team, speaking with them at their base in Spain. Aside from the usual technical questions about racing in Moto2 in the World Championship, we spoke to the SIC Racing duo about their thoughts and plans for the future, notably with the withdrawal of Petronas sponsorship from the motorcycle racing world stage.

As expected, Adam was in good spirits, saying the unexpected call from Sepang Racing Team principal was completely unexpected. “It’s a dream ride for me, taking (Jake) Dixon’s place in Moto2 for the British Grand Prix. I’d like to thank Datuk Razlan for offering me the ride,” said a visibly happy Adam.

For the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, a one-race game of musical chairs has taken place, with regular Sprinta Racing rider Dixon moving to MotoGP seat at Sepang Racing Team (SRT) belonging to Franco Morbidelli. With Morbidelli currently recovering from knee surgery, Yamaha test rider Cal Crutchlow was signed on to compete in three races, starting with the Styrian and followed by the Austrian Grands Prix.

However, the sudden dismissal of Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP team’s Maverick Vinales caused Crutchlow to get a call up to the factory team, leaving Sepang Racing Team with an unexpected vacancy in the MotoGP class. Being an SIC Racing rider and having raced with Sprinta Racing Team in the Moto2 class in 2019 racing the Kalex Moto2 machine, Adam was seen as a suitable choice, perhaps allowing Razlan to silence criticism that there were no Malaysian riders in SRT in 2021.

Needless to say, Adam realises the task ahead of him, even if it’s just one weekend, will not be easy. With a very short time and almost no opportunity for practice and fine tuning the race bike which is setup for Dixon, Adam said he will run with Dixon’s settings first and consult with the crew chief after studying the data.

“In FIM CEV Moto2, we are running the 600 cc four-cylinder Honda engine, while in the Moto2 world championship, the Triumph three-cylinder is very different from what I am used to,” Adam said. “What I will do is ride to the bike and do the best I can because the time for me to do a proper test and setup is not available,” elaborated Adam.

No expectations are being placed on Adam for the weekend, says Zulfahmi, because of the challenges imposed. “As always, we will expect him to do the best he can and I am certain Adam will do so,” Zulfhami said.

Commenting on the situation with Petronas, or the lack of sponsorship thereof, going forward into 2022, Zulfahmi remains optimistic about the SIC Racing’s future in Europe. “We are still discussing with SIC management, with (Sepang CEO) Encik Shafriman, about what happens next year, whether we will continue with CEV or we decide if Adam or Damok move up to the world championship,” said Zulfahmi.

“Right now we are looking at the rest of the 2021 CEV season, where we need to show improvement in our results and finishes,” Zulfhami added. With two races left in the FIM CEV calendar – Misano, Italy in September and Valencia, Spain in November – he says his young charges are putting in 110% effort for improvement.

Asked about what the SIC Racing riders need to do to show results, Zulfhami was direct and to the point. “They need to spend more time on the bike. This is motorcycle racing and to be better, you need to spend as much time on the bike and on the circuit as you can, not riding bicycles around like the MotoGP superstars,” he says with a smile.

“A lot of help has come from SIC, especially with Josiah Ng joining us to consult on the rider’s mental and physical fitness. I have been working closely with Josiah and am positive there will be improvements made,” Zulfahmi elaborated. “For next year, I will leave that to SIC management. For now, I will concentrate on getting the best out of the boys, not just for this season, but also to develop their racing career.”