A1 Team Malaysia To Support Government Efforts in Motorsport Development
The A1 Team Malaysia announced that they will support the Malaysian government efforts in developing motorsports at a presentation function in Kuala Lumpur, yesterday.
"A1 Team Malaysia will play a significant role in support of the Government's plans for race driver development as well as offering a proving ground for motorsport engineering academic projects through the hiring of Malaysian race engineers and mechanics," said Alex Yoong, the principal seat holder of the consortium which holds the A1 Grand Prix Malaysian franchise.
The A1 Team Malaysia franchise is only one of 23 initially available from A1 Grand Prix.
Malaysia already has in place very active motorsport development programmes run by corporations like Petronas, Proton and the Sepang International Circuit. With the news that the Ministry of Youth and Sport's impending launch of the Malaysian Motorsport Commission, A1 Team Malaysia intends to play a supporting and interactive role to realise the visions of the government to achieve excellence in this area which will spur on the growth of the motorsport industry in Malaysia.
With all the 23 national A1 teams running identical cars in the inaugural championship of the "world cup of motorsport", Malaysia has as good a chance as any of the other teams to emerge victorious in the new championship. The championship rules allow for any number of driver changes within a championship year as long as the drivers are the citizens of the respective countries holding the national franchise.
"We will therefore groom all Malaysian drivers currently competing internationally to get up to speed to jump into the cockpit of the Malaysian car as quickly as possible," added Yoong. "If it is possible, we like to see at least half a dozen Malaysians at any one time competing for the team seat the reserve driver seat each year and that a stream of capable Malaysians is continuously available to help bring glory to our country."
In the area of curricula and academic cooperation in race engineering with schools and colleges, A1 Team Malaysia has already started the process with academic organisations in the private sector. When the time is right, the team will formally approach the government together with organisations that are specialists in this area. The inaugural year will see the team concentrating in racing and formulating future plans that, in time, will benefit grassroots development of the sport and the community. To this end A1 Team Malaysia will:
* Promote national pride in a global based series and championship with Malaysian drivers in a Malaysian car.
* Provide the platform for job creation, skills development and transfer of race knowledge and technical experience.
* Support the Malaysian government in their objectives to create and develop home grown Malaysian race driver talent.