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December 11, 2017

Same Stock Mazda2 Races Two 8-Hour Endurance Races

The same stock Mazda2 hatchback which completed 160 laps and won the Manufacturer’s Class in last year’s 8-hour Philippine Endurance Challenge race, logged in another 163 laps to take home sixth place in the FM3 class in the 8-Oras ng Pilipinas circuit racing endurance race held at the Clark International Speedway this year.

Driven this year by graduates and finalists of the Automobile Association Philippines - Motor Sports Development Program, the Mazda2 now marks two years of reliable running with no changes or modifications done to its stock engine and major suspension components. The young team composed of 2016 MSDP finalists Carlos Marzo, Andre delos Santos, Hazel Ramirez, Miguel Reyes, Armand Marcaida, and 2015 MSDP top finalist Polo Bautista, ably took the Mazda2 through the tight battles on the track that ensued throughout the day against the highly modified cars in their class.

“We are proud of the skillful driving that was shown by the MSDP finalists with the stock Mazda2,” shares Steven Tan, president and CEO of Bermaz Auto Philippines, the exclusive distributor of Mazda cars and parts in the country. “With the MSDP finalists’ expert driving and the team’s masterful management of the race, the Mazda2 has proven yet again its stamina and reliability in this year’s 8-hour endurance challenge. We believe in the MSDP’s goal to discover fresh racing talent. Honing them through this culminating race of the year showed that the Mazda-MSDP partnership is indeed a viable source of future racing talent who can deliver when it counts.”

MSDP chief instructor and 10-time National Rally Champion, Vip Isada, is likewise impressed with what the team was able to accomplish over the weekend.  “Our main goals for this race was to provide the MSDP students valuable seat time on the track to further improve their racing skills and to give them a taste of real competitive motor sports in order to elevate their confidence behind the wheel,” says Isada. “Because of the Mazda2’s reliability, we only had to focus on completing the 8-hours in the track instead of out of it. It is rewarding to see what the kids have done in such a short period of time with an almost showroom stock car.”

The Automobile Association Philippines runs the Motor Sports Development Program which teaches 16 to 19-year olds the skill set required in competitive car racing. Mazda has been supporting the program in its quest to educate future generations of drivers. By elevating their skills and adding valuable experience behind the wheel, the partnership aims to produce safer drivers both on the road and on the race track.

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