BTCC: Team PSP 2002 profile

PETRONAS has raced in Malaysian and Asian Saloon car events under the name TEAM PETRONAS since 1990, achieving significant championship successes and more than eighty wins. During 1999 and 2000, in collaboration with Opel South Africa, the team...

PETRONAS has raced in Malaysian and Asian Saloon car events under the name TEAM PETRONAS since 1990, achieving significant championship successes and more than eighty wins.

During 1999 and 2000, in collaboration with Opel South Africa, the team participated in the South African Touring Car Championship (SATCC) entering as TEAM PETRONAS SYNTIUM OPEL. After the SATCC ceased, the South African challenge continued with the 2001 South African Wesbank V8 Championship for which a completely new car was designed and built in nine weeks.

While preserving its Malaysian roots in 2002 with TEAM PETRONAS PRIMAX, the Team is setting its sights higher still by entering the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC), arguably the premier touring car series in the world.

In the new livery of PETRONAS SYNTIUM PROTON, the Team is entering two PETRONAS-backed Proton Impians in the BTC Drivers' and Manufacturers' Championship, adding a brand new marque to the grid. Technical support is provided to TEAM PETRONAS SYNTIUM PROTON by the same PETRONAS Engineers previously attached to the South African venture.

2002 Key personnel

Team Director/Team Manager: David Wong
Technical & Sporting Advisor: Peter Gillitzer
Operations Director: Ian Doble
Chief Designer : Jim Router (layout and package)
Designer: Geoff Aldridge (rear suspension)
Designer: Jerry Booen (front suspension)
Designer: Geoff Johnson (engine installation)
Chief Engineer: Makhzan Selamat "Chief"
Chief Mechanic: Trevor Griffiths
Race Engineer: Brian Johnson
Powertrain Engineer: Mazlan Dindi
Chassis and Transmission Engineer: Wan Halim Wan Ahmad "Wan"
Electrical Engineer: Omar Alsagoff
Chassis Engineer & Race Engineer:: Asmadi Mansor "Madi"

David Wong - Team PETRONAS Founder and Principal

David Wong first took the PETRONAS name into Touring Car and Superbike racing in 1990 and immediately established his team as the regional pacesetters in Asia.

Over the next decade, Team PETRONAS achieved over eighty wins including dominant performances as far afield as Korea, Australia, Macau and South Africa.

David's considerable experience in, and exposure to, world standard motorsport has meant that Team PETRONAS has always fielded current, works-level technology and equipment supported by leaders in their field.

Ford Sierra and Mondeo (ex Eggenberger, Rouse and Wolf), NISMO Nissan Pulsar, Spoon Honda Civic and TOM's Toyota Carina are just some of the many marques & models campaigned by David Wong.

Names like Carl Fogarty, Ruedi Eggenberger, Peter Gillitzer, David Mountain, Gianfranco Brancatelli, Robbie Phillis, Graham Goode, Graham Hathaway, Mike Briggs and Deon Joubert are amongst the many personalities that fill the honour roll at Team PETRONAS.

Having established his credentials in domestic racing, David Wong's Team PETRONAS began its truly global campaign in 1999 with Team Petronas Syntium Opel in South Africa.

Now, with Team PETRONAS SYNTIUM PROTON, David accepts the double challenge of the prestigious British Touring Car Championship and the from-scratch development of the Malaysian standard-bearing Proton Impian/Waja.

Peter Gillitzer - Technical & Sporting Advisor A former Director of Motorsport with Ford of Europe, Peter was responsible for F1, WRC Rallying and European Touring Car Programs.

He has worked as a design and development engineer for Daimler Benz, Pontiac Motor Corp and General Motors Holden before joining Ford Australia where he held executive positions in Product Planning, Marketing and Special Vehicles Operations. He initiated the establishment of Ford Australia's Special Vehicles Operation with Tickford. As head of motorsport he was instrumental in formulating the Australian V8 Touring Car regulations and guiding Ford's return to motorsport.

Peter has known David Wong for over 10 years and acts as a consultant to the team on sporting and technical issues.

Ian Doble - Operations Director (age 47-ish)

Team PSP may be new to BTCC but many of its members have been involved in the upper echelons of motorsport for many years.

Masterminded by David Wong, the UK team has been assembled by Ian Doble, a seasoned engineer with a CV that reads like a Who's Who of the automotive industry - formative years at Perkins Diesel Engines before moving to Lotus Engineering where he led the design teams that created the superb Chevrolet LT5 engine and the acclaimed front wheel drive Lotus Elan among others. He also re-introduced Lotus to GT racing with Chamberlain Engineering in 1994. Since leaving Lotus, he has been deeply involved with a number of top-flight road and race car projects as a consultant, his roles in which are shrouded in confidentiality. He is the founder of Puresport, a 'virtual' engineering consultancy respected in the automotive industry.

He has been working with David Wong since mid-2001 to launch Team PETRONAS Syntium Proton into BTCC Touring Championship this year with the two Petronas-backed works Proton Impians.

Jim Router - Chief Designer (age 45) Initially gaining experience in powertrain layout detail design, Jim has concentrated over the last fifteen years in whole-vehicle concept engineering and layout work, with particular emphasis on engineering and homologation of exclusive vehicles under the UK Low Volume Type Approval scheme.

Projects he has contributed to include the fabled McLaren F1 supercar, the Jaguar XJR15, the Bugatti EB110, Panoz GTR and Toyota GT-One. During the last two years, he has added a number of critically-acclaimed concept cars to his portfolio, including the stunning Cadillac Raptor which stole the show at the Detroit Auto Show in January 2002.

His role with Team PETRONAS Syntium Proton covers the vehicle package and whole vehicle design responsibility.

Jerry Booen - Designer (age 45) Jerry worked with Colin Chapman at Team Lotus on the fabulous and highly innovative Lotus 79 ground effect car, driven by Mario Andretti to the 1978 F1 World Championship. He stayed with the team for a number of years working on all the type numbers up to the 96.

As a freelance engineer affiliated to Ian Doble's Puresports operation, he has since worked on the designs of many sports racing cars such as the Richard Lloyd Porsche 956/962 Group "C" car, the Mazda 737 Rotary Group "C" Le Mans car and the Nissan R390 GT1 Le Mans car on behalf of TWR.

His portfolio includes confidential design work on a number of noted road cars and concept cars. For Team PETRONAS Syntium Proton, Jerry has been responsible for the design of the front suspension.

Geoff Johnson - Engine Design Consultant Geoff began his career in 1951 with BRM working on their fabled Formula One cars and engines including the amazing 1.5 litre supercharged V16 engine and the complex 3-litre H16 engine.

In 1969 he joined British Leyland as Chief Engineer responsible for all passenger car engines including the K-series prototype and O-series. Some ten years later he joined Hesketh to take charge of the design and development of the Hesketh V1000 Super Motorcycle, in addition to overseeing the technical aspects of Hesketh's business of re-building Cosworth DFV Formula 1 Racing Engines.

From 1986-1994 he worked for both Cosworth and Lotus Engineering on the design of passenger car engines for industry clients. In 1994 he established his own consultancy business in high speed/high performance engine design and development.

For Team PSP, Geoff has been responsible for engine installation and the engine/gearbox interface.

Trevor Griffiths - Chief Mechanic As the driving force behind TJ Motorsport, Trevor Griffiths has been heavily involved in ASCAR for the last two years. Prior to that, he ran two race winning cars in the Vectra Challenge, with earlier experience in other saloon and touring car categories.

Brian Johnson - Race Engineer (42) Widely experienced in sports car and open wheel racing, Brian Johnson recently secured major successes for Carlin Motorsport in the Porsche Supercup. A decade ago, he engineered the Toyota Team Tom's Group C car driven by John Watson, Johnnie Dumfries et al.

Makhzan Selamat "Chief"- Chief Engineer The 'old boy' in Team PETRONAS, Chief is an experienced chemical and customer engineer. He ensures that maximum technology transfer is achieved for the engineers' development program and his depth of knowledge, both within and outside PETRONAS, is a steadying influence for the fast-paced development program that thrusts young Malaysian engineers into the thick of world class Touring Car racing.

Mazlan Dindi - Powertrain Engineer An honours graduate in Mechanical Engineering from Northeastern University in Boston, Mazlan is Team PSP's engine specialist. He joined Team PETRONAS in 1999 for the South African campaign and was instrumental in the development of the Opel 2 litre engine that ultimately became an SATCC race winner. In 2001, Mazlan began work on the gigantic 6 litre Chevrolet and sophisticated 4.6 litre Northstar powerplant for the Wesbank V8 Series.

Wan Halim Wan Ahmad "Wan" - Chassis and Transmission Engineer An outstanding academic graduate from Rensselaer Polytechnic in New York, Wan initially went to Matra in France to coordinate PETRONAS' involvement in the Enviro 2000 NGV program. Wan then joined the newly-created Team Petronas Syntium Opel in the 1999 SATCC and is now responsible for the many aspects of transmission maintenance and development, including software and simulators.

Omar Alsagoff - Electrical Engineer Omar joined Team PETRONAS in 1999 as a graduate from Nagaoka University of Technology, Japan, where he studied Electrical Engineering. Omar is Team PSP's Data Acquisition System specialist and an experienced and capable electronics specialist. After proving his worth in the SATCC program, Omar now holds one of the most critical positions in the team. His success is a rewarding measurement of the PETRONAS engineer development program.

Asmadi Mansor "Madi" - Chassis Engineer With a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Vanderbilt University in Texas, USA, Madi joined Team Petronas in January 2000 working as the team's chassis design engineer and race engineer. With success under his belt working with the Team PETRONAS Syntium Opel race cars in South Africa, Madi is running Phil Bennett's car this season.


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About this article
Series BTCC
Drivers Mario Andretti , John Watson , Richard Lloyd , Carl Fogarty , Brian Johnson , Phil Bennett , Colin Chapman
Teams Team Lotus , Carlin