KUALA lUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Sunday, 10th June 2001 - Hanifah Yoong who has been managing Malaysia's Formula One hope Alex Yoong since Alex's racing debut in a PROTON in 1992, today announced that he will step aside in favour of a more professional...
KUALA lUMPUR, MALAYSIA - Sunday, 10th June 2001 - Hanifah Yoong who has been managing Malaysia's Formula One hope Alex Yoong since Alex's racing debut in a PROTON in 1992, today announced that he will step aside in favour of a more professional team to manage Alex.
Hanifah Yoong, 52, has been involved with motor sport organisation and promotion since 1982. He ran the Rally of Malaysia from 1981 to 1990, managed the Shah Alam Ciruit in a 10 year contract from 1988 to 1997 which also saw him bringing the FIM World Motorcycle Grand Prix into Malaysia in 1991.
Hanifah said in Kuala Lumpur that "I have seen Alex develop into a world class racer over the last 10 intensive years of his career and I must accept what is better for him. In fact I consider myself having already stayed on 3 years too long but that was due to the reccession which ravaged the S.E.Asian region which meant that Alex could not implement his plan for a more professional manager. I am very happy that he will be in good hands with a very professional and experienced man in Simon Munger who will take over from me with immediate effect."
Alex Yoong who flew back from Japan two days ago to finalise Munger's appointment in Kuala Lumpur commented that, "My manager Hanifah who is also my father had been my most important source of support since even before the start of my racing career. He has been good for me and I would not have got this far with any other person managing me in my early career days. He is the one who is instrumental in this change and I respect his decision to hand over the role to Simon whom I have worked with in the last 3 years as my manager in Europe."
Simon Munger, 36, will be responsible for securing Alex's drive in F1 and then to cement his future within the sport. He will also be taking on the responsibility to negotiate with other teams and will look after any other sporting matters with regard to Alex and the team. In addition he will also work along side Alex Yoong International Ltd. in developing all commercial activities as well as developing the working partnership with Alex Yoong’s sponsors.
In the meantime, IMG Overseas (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. has also been appointed by Alex Yoong International Ltd. as the Sponsorship Marketing Partner to support Munger in sponsorship marketing worldwide. Hanifah Yoong will continue to play a role in the background to train other supporting staff as well as to run the PR and Press Office of Alex Yoong till after Alex secures a Formula 1 drive and starts receving income to enable more support staff to be appointed.
Munger commented on his impending appointment that "I have worked with Alex since 1997 when he drove for the Portman Formula 3 team which I managed and then since 1999 when Alex raced in the Italian and FIA Formula 3000 season. Hanifah had always been in contact with me as was Alex. So it is not as if I'm stepping into this role cold. I am looking forward to helping Alex in developing his career to it's full successful potential. Since I first observed him driving the Formula Renault in 1996, I have always thought that he'll be in Formula 1 one day and this will come sooner rather than later."
The new manager, Simon Munger comes with an impressive motor sport credential having been involved for 18 years. He had been involved with MARCH, ONYX and the JORDAN Formula One team for 6 years before running the Portman F3 team as the managing director in 1997.