FNIPPON: Disappointing weekend for Alex Yoong at Mine

Malaysia's Alex Yoong failed to finish in round 3 of the 2000 Formula Nippon Championship at the CP Mine Circuit last weekend At the first aborted start of the race, S.Motoyama and Jaroslaw Wierczuk stalled their cars and were moved to the back...

Malaysia's Alex Yoong failed to finish in round 3 of the 2000 Formula Nippon Championship at the CP Mine Circuit last weekend At the first aborted start of the race, S.Motoyama and Jaroslaw Wierczuk stalled their cars and were moved to the back of the grid from 10th and 14th position respectively.

Just before the second start's green flag lap, Alex stalled his car and joined the warm up lap in last spot at 20th position following a push start. Alex had earlier qualified 12th on the grid.

The second start saw Alex having a very good start but Alex made a mistake trying to go on the inside of turn 2 trying to pass S. Motoyama.

"It's always easy to reflect in hind sight but my car stalling at the re-start's warm up lap did ruffle me a bit. I was disappointed for being at the back of the grid after qualifying well. I was too ambitious in my first lap and made a bad mistake. I have to say sorry to Motoyama, Kondo and Tachikawa for causing the accident. I've learned from this and will now aim to finish my races instead of thinking of positions or points." said a bitterly disappointed Alex.

Team Malaysia's Director K. Homma said "We had a long long chat with Alex after the race. We told Alex that his ability is not questioned but now he's just got to finish races, that's all. He just have to be patient and maintain a cool head to get ahead. We will need a better weekend in round 4 at Fuji Speedway."

Analysing the situation, Hanifah Yoong the President of MMOCA who is the joint venture partner with Japan Race Promotion (JRP) in the Team Malaysia project said, "Alex's participation at the Formula Nippon Championship is a very tough job. Made especially tougher by the very high expectations from back home in Malaysia as well as from the good support Alex is getting from Japan. I can see that he may have put himself under too much unnecessary pressures from these expectations and he wants to deliver the results. I'm confident that he'll correct the situation and settle down properly from now on."

Hanifah also said that "The support from the team and JRP is complete and for Malaysia to see Alex where we want him to be in a few years' time, more support and closer rapport from home are badly needed. We need to give Alex another 3 races to prove himself at this high level and he has the potential to deliver when he handles the various pressures in correct perspectives. He can only get stronger from this weekend's experience."

Team PIAA Nakajima's rookie T. Matsuda had his debut Formula Nippon win after his team-mate and ex-Formula 1 driver T. Takagi retired with engine problems at lap 45 of the 62 lap race while leading for most of the way. Matsuda clocked 1h 20m 07.628s.

Second again, for the third time in three rounds is German M. Krumm with a time of 1h 20m 15.412s while Team LeMans' Hideki Noda was third at 1h 20m 31.129s.

Round 4 will be run at the Fuji Speedway on the 3rd and 4th June 2000.

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About this article
Series Other open wheel
Drivers Alex Yoong , Hideki Noda