Motorsports in Malaysia is expensive and industry is lagging behind other SEA countries, says Alex Yoong –

Alex Yoong has said motorsports is still expensive and needs to be made more accessible to Malaysians. In a report by NST, the former Formula 1 driver said bringing down the costs of competing in motorsports was important to ensure that Malaysia does not fall behind when compared to its Southeast Asian peers.

“On one hand, we have countries such as Thailand, the Philippines and Indonesia where their motorsports [industry] is going up but then we have Malaysia, which has been stuck for the past 20 years,” said Yoong during the third round of the Malaysia Championship Series (MCS).

“I believe to bring the costs down, you need to have partners involved in the sport, you need sponsors. Racing teams need sponsors and racing series (organisers) both need sponsors. But to do so, the product (championships) needs to be good enough to warrant sponsorship. It (championships) needs to be packaged in a way that is easy for fans to understand, at the moment that is not the case,” he added.

Yoong also said Malaysia has some very good drivers that need to have their talent showcased. The 47-year-old is currently competing in the MSC, driving an almost stock Suzuki Swift which he also uses to train students of his driving academy, Axle Sports. “I am competing in MCS because I haven’t raced a car since 2018 and was starting to itch for some fun. But the main reason is actually to show people that you can still compete and win using a relatively slow car,” Yoong said.

“This is the same car we (Axle Sports) use to train our drivers; we call it the ‘school car’. It has leaky dampers but can still reel off two minute and 45 second laps (at Sepang) easily. We just want to show people that it is not all about the car. You have to learn to drive and then learn to race,” he continued, urging those who interested in taking up motorsports to learn the fundamentals using simulators, which are cheaper to get into, before moving on to the real thing.

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