Sepang: Alex Yoong spotlight

YOONG GEARS UP FOR A1GP SEPANG SPECTACULAR A1 Team Malaysia driver Alex Yoong is ready for battle this weekend in the fourth round of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport at Sepang, Malaysia. Speaking at a press conference held in the Petronas...

YOONG GEARS UP FOR A1GP SEPANG SPECTACULAR

A1 Team Malaysia driver Alex Yoong is ready for battle this weekend in the fourth round of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport at Sepang, Malaysia. Speaking at a press conference held in the Petronas Towers earlier today, Yoong expressed a strong desire to win in front of his home crowd, but admitted it will not be easy.

"The race is very tough and close and with great racers like France, who are strong as usual. Hopefully we will be strong as well, and look forward to the local crowd coming down and supporting us, which will spur us on to win," the Malaysian said. Yoong is however confident he stands a good chance of success. "We feel very competitive. When we started last year, we were just breaking in but we eventually managed to win."

Yoong fully expects the support of a large crowd to cheer himself and team-mate Fairuz Fauzy, "Last year was a huge high for the team and for me personally. The grandstand was full with about 20,000 people, but it felt like over 100,000, and this was extremely special."

Present at the same press conference held in the 452 metre Petronas Towers were Yoong's team-mate Fairuz Fauzy, Indonesia driver Moreno Soeprapto, Singapore's Christian Murchison, plus defending champion A1 Team France's Nicolas Lapierre. Beijing Feature race winner Enrico Toccacelo was at the conference.

Singapore scored its first points of the 2006/07 season in Beijing just two weeks ago. Speaking today, Murchison was optimistic of more success, "Yes, I am quite hopeful, I look forward to a good result. To score in Beijing was good, and we are on the board now and we look forward to building on that and work our way to a good result at Sepang."

As a curtain-raiser for the race, a selection of drivers also took part in a series of PR activities today in and around the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur. This morning a group of drivers including representatives from nations as diverse as Malaysia, Indonesia, South Africa, China and India, and A1GP Executives visited the Proton factory to see the production of Malaysia's popular car marque.

Jack Cunningham, Chief Executive of A1 Team Malaysia, said of the A1GP visit to Proton: "Our relationship with Proton, the national car manufacturer, is a highly important one for our team. It is everything that a commercial partnership in motorsport should be. From the very start of our relationship with Proton it was clear that their most important objective is to sell more cars through their association with motorsport of this calibre - this we are setting off to accomplish together. Proton have implemented a national point of sale campaign in all their dealerships featuring the A1 Team Malaysia car and are beginning to implement sales promotion activities using their association with us. That's the start. Today's visit to the Proton factory by A1GP executives and a number of the A1 Teams, including teams from countries in which Proton distribute cars, was outstanding.

The Chairman and Managing Director of Proton welcomed the A1GP group including Alan Jones of A1 Team Australia and Emerson Fittipaldi of A1 Team Brazil. The fact that Emerson was able to attend is made more remarkable by the fact that he was the F1 World Champion in a Lotus, one of the most important names in motorsport, and a company now owned by Proton Holdings. Our commercial objectives are to deliver to our partners to the fullest of our abilities. Today we were able to do so for Proton, and we thank all the teams and executives of A1GP who took part."

Later in the afternoon another group of drivers were treated to white knuckle rides in the Cosmos World Theme Park in the Berjaya Times Square shopping complex for television crews and photographers. The largest indoor amusement park in the region houses the super-quick Supersonic Odyssey rollercoaster with its 360-degree bend and helix-shaped twists plus a terrifying rotating platform named the DNA Mixer - and A1GP drivers couldn't resist having a go.

-credit: a1gp

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About this article
Series A1GP
Drivers Alex Yoong , Alan Jones , Emerson Fittipaldi , Fairuz Fauzy , Nicolas Lapierre , Christian Murchison , Jack Cunningham