Former national rider Ahmad Zamani Baharudin (3rd from right) says proper platforms should be made available in the country for youngsters to hone their skills in the states. pic by NSTP/MAHZIR MAT ISA

KUALA LUMPUR: Former national rider Ahmad Zamani Baharudin says proper platforms should be made available in the country for youngsters to hone their skills in the states.

Zamani, who is credited in grooming Azlan Shah Kamaruzaman into a world-class rider, said although motorcycling has come a long way since his riding days, there is still room for improvement.

"During my time, many riders started their (racing) careers after the age of 20 due to lack of support,” said the former Asia Road Racing Championship runner-up.

"There are a lot more races and programmes for young riders coming up these days such as those done by Sepang International Circuit (SIC), Safe Aim Mutual and Two Wheels Motor Racing.

"But there are also many events or races, which I would not call illegal, but do not have proper sanctioning and insurance. In other words, they do not follow the right channels.

"This could cause the riders to face difficulty if they are involved in an accident or get in trouble with the authorities for riding in an event which is not sanctioned.

"This will scare people from getting involved in the sport, especially parents."

Several motorcycle clubs have hosted unsanctioned events. Motorsport Association of Malaysia (MAM) and Automobile Association of Malaysia (AAM) are the sanctioning bodies.

"It would be great if we had platforms in each state where youngsters could be introduced to the sport in a properly supervised environment.

"These programmes or races would follow the required regulations and separate riders according to (bike) specification and other aspects.

"At the moment, I believe this is only available in Johor. If we could replicate this in each state it would certainly help in identifying and grooming riders with talent,” he added.

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