APRC – Proton R3 Motorsports cemerlang


PELUMBA dan krew Pasukan Rali Proton R3 meraikan kejayaan pada perlumbaan APRC Rali Hokkaido, Jepun kelmarin.

KUALA LUMPUR – Proton R3 Motorsports meraikan hujung minggu yang cukup gemilang dengan kejayaan para pelumbanya mencatat penyudah podium dalam perlumbaan di tiga buah negara.
Pasukan itu yang mempertaruhkan jentera Proton Satria Neo menggegar dalam Kejuaraan Rali Dunia (SWRC) di Britain, Kejuaraan Rali Asia-Pacific (APRC) di Hokkaido, Jepun dan Siri Super Malaysia (MSS) di Litar Antarabangsa Sepang (SIC).
Dalam perlumbaan SWRC di Britain, pelumba muda Wales, Tom Cave menduduki tempat kedua bersama Pasukan Rali Proton R3 Motorsports pada Kejuaraan Rali Dunia Super 2000 bersama jentera Proton Satria Neo S2000.
Dalam saingan APRC Rali Hokkaido, ia merupakan pencapaian hebat buat Pasukan Rali Proton R3 Cusco apabila pasukan itu menguasai kedudukan pertama, kedua dan ketiga dalam kategori 2WD.
Pelumba rali handalan negara yang pernah muncul juara keseluruhan APRC sebanyak tiga kali, Karamjit Singh meneruskan dominasi dalam kategori 2WD, walaupun dia kehilangan masa satu setengah minit.
Rakan sepasukan Karamjit dari Jepun, Akira Bamba juga berpesta dengan kejayaan muncul juara kali kedua berturut-turut dalam kelas Kejuaraan Junior APRC selepas menduduki tempat pertama dalam kelas tersebut dan kedudukan kedua dalam kelas 2WD.
Pelumba muda negara, Kenneth Koh melengkapkan minggu sempurna buat pasukannya selepas menamatkan saingan pada tempat kedua dalam Kategori Junior dan kedudukan ketiga dalam kelas 2WD.
Secara keseluruhan, ia merupakan hujung minggu yang cemerlang buat Proton walaupun dua jentera Proton Satria Neo S2000 yang dipandu Alister McRae dan Juha Salo gagal menamatkan perlumbaan di Hokkaido.
Dalam saingan di litar tempatan, MSS di Litar Antarabangsa Sepang, gandingan pelumba Pasukan Lumba Proton R3, Syafiq Ali dan James Veerapen merangkul kejuaraan MSS, ketika baki satu perlumbaan dengan menggunakan jentera Proton R3 Satria.



APRC – Victory for Proton

MOTOR RALLY: McRae conquers gruelling race
FOR the second successive year, Alister McRae scored a victory for Proton in the Malaysian Rally yesterday.


Proton’s Alister McRae maneuvers his Satria Neo S2000 in the Malaysian Rally yesterday.
This also saw McRae recording his first win this season in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC).
Finishing second overnight, McRae, driving a Satria Neo S2000, completed the 12.46km Tai Tak Court House stretch in 10 minutes 37 seconds, three seconds faster than teammate PG Andersson.
Andersson, who led the rally, retired at the end of special stage 10. Proton R3 Cusco Rally Team’s Karamjit Singh finished fourth fastest in a front wheel drive 1600cc Satria Neo.
“We had a brilliant and trouble-free run to the finish. We lost some time due to a puncture on the second day but were able to maintain a competitive pace and progressively push ahead to reduce the deficit significantly,” said McRae. 
“With unpredictable weather, the Malaysian Rally certainly reaffirms itself as a challenging event.”
Yesterday’s success is a testimonial of the Proton Satria’s strength in one of the world’s toughest rallies.
With a distance of 235.28km, the Malaysian Rally comprised 15 special stages, which were run on gravel and took competitors through some of the most gruelling terrain on the APRC tour.
The Malaysian rally kicked off on Friday with the ceremonial 2.5km Angsana super special stage designed for spectators. The third and final leg of the rally was run over seven special stages.

SWRC – MOTOR RALLY: Andersson on the podium again

PROTON’S P.G. Andersson overcame a difficult and challenging Rally New Zealand yesterday to chalk up his second successive podium finish in the Super 2000 World Rally Championship (SWRC) contenders.
Motor rally

Proton’s P.G. Andersson has accumulated 25 points after two rounds.
The Swedish driver began promisingly on the first special stage of Leg 1, leading the S2000 class and posting eighth fastest time overall, just 1.4 seconds behind overall rally leader Petter Solberg in the world rally car.
The Satria Neo S2000 was again the fastest S2000 car on the third and final day of rallying which consisted of 22 special stages.
Rally New Zealand was run over a competitive distance of 413.94km. Leg 1 on Friday saw drivers taking on eight special stages with another seven special stages on Saturday. Yesterday’s third and final leg was contested over seven special stages.
Andersson, who had rallied the Satria Neo S2000 to its maiden victory in the SWRC at his home rally in Sweden, is fourth in the FIA SWRC Drivers’ standings after two rounds with 25 points, while teammate Alister McRae is eighth. The team had elected not to compete in the Rally of Portugal, the third round of the SWRC, due to commitments in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC).
Despite enjoying competitive times, pacing himself to as high as fourth in the SWRC class and 12th overall, McRae was forced to bow out of the rally early due to mechanical problems.

APRC – MOTOR RALLYING: Proton stamp their mark

IN THE ZONE: Two top five finishes and victory in 2WD category


Defending Asia Pacific Rally Championship champ Alister McRae en route to finishing second in the overall classification of the International Rally of Queensland.
QUEENSLAND: PROTON rallied to two top five finishes in the overall classifications and  clinched victory in the two-wheel drive category at the  International Rally of Queensland.
Defending Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) champion Alister McRae finished second in the two-day rally with team mate PG Andersson coming in fourth, while in the 2WD class, Proton’s Akira Bamba drove to a well and hard-earned victory.
Skoda’s Chris Atkinson won the rally while in third place was veteran driver Brian Green. With eight special stages being run on the final day, McRae drove the Satria Neo S2000 to a textbook finish in pursuit of Atkinson.
The highest gainer of the day however, was Andersson who punched his way up to fourth place from ninth at the end of the opening day.
“Despite being faced with a difficult start to the rally, both McRae and Andersson drove to a commendable finish to secure valuable championship points… We are still in it (the fight for the APRC championship),” said Datuk Abdul Razak Dawood, the head of Proton Motorsports.
Proton meanwhile, continued to stretch their dominance in the 2WD category with reigning APRC Junior champion Bamba taking top honours in the 1600cc Satria Neo ahead of another Proton privateer Sanjay Takle.
The Junior category was won by local driver Mike Young, also in a Proton Satria Neo, who finished ahead of Bamba.
“All in all, Proton can be proud of its achievement in Queensland, returning to the event for a second year running to improve its performance from a fourth position last year to clinch a podium finish this time round.
“And this underlines our commitment to be better,” said Proton’s Director of Group Marketing, Branding and Motorsports John D. Chacko.
Rally Queensland was contested over a total distance of 863km.


APRC – MOTOR RALLY: Proton miss out on podium


PROTON concluded a challenging round 2 in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) with a series of misfortunes denying the team a strong podium finish.

Motor Rally

Proton driver Alister McRae won three of the day’s six special stages.
Despite starting Rally New Caledonia strongly, Proton were not only forced to concede the lead going into the second day but also suffered one early retirement.
Defending APRC champion Alister McRae retired in the second special stage but continued on the final day under Super Rally format, winning three of the day’s six special stages to secure seven valuable championship points.
McRae finished day 3 ahead of Skoda’s Gaurav Gill and Chris Atkinson but was not eligible for a podium finish. Gill won the rally ahead of teammate Atkinson with Brian Greene in third.
Having led the rally on the opening day and setting fastest times in three of the four special stages, Proton’s PG Andersson was also forced to relinquish his lead on the second day of rallying.
Andersson’s Satria Neo S2000 experienced an abrupt loss of power as a result of a water crossing, a predicament that would later cost him to lose more than 14 minutes and dropping the Swedish driver to fourth in the APRC category.
With a large deficit to make up, Andersson however, was denied the chance of a roaring comeback on the third and final day by a second mechanical failure.
Rally New Caledonia was contested over a competitive distance of 252.82km covering 19 special stages.
“We had hoped for a repeat of last year’s double podium results in New Caledonia but the reality of rallying is such that all the hardwork and preparation is never a guarantee of a strong finish,” said Datuk Abdul Razak Dawood, the head of Proton Motorsports.
“Having said this, we take back some consolation in the fact that the Satria Neo S2000 is at its most competitive form in the hands of both McRae and Andersson having set a blistering pace at the head of the competition.”
Proton’s Director of Group Marketing, Branding and Motorsport John D. Chacko said the Satria Neo S2000’s performance in New Caledonia earned the team renewed admiration and respect.
“The fighting spirit of the two drivers clearly outweighed the misfortunes we endured in New Caledonia and this only goes towards strengthening our resolve as we focus on the remaining rounds in the championship.
“This shows Proton’s continued perseverance and commitment to be better.”

MOTOR RALLY: Proton’s Andersson clinches second spot

PROTON’S P.G. Andersson drove a commendable Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) debut to clinch second overall in the Brother International Rally of Whangarei in New Zealand.


Proton’s P.G. Andersson in action in the Brother International Rally of Whangarei in New Zealand yesterday.

A further two minutes behind was India’s Gaurav Gill. Proton teammate and defending APRC champion Alister McRae, meanwhile, finished fourth in the APRC class and fourth overall after enduring a difficult start to the rally in which, by virtue of starting first, played the role of ‘road sweeper’ for the rest of the competitors.

Andersson’s APRC campaign, on the other hand, had got off to a brilliant start when he was fastest through special stage one.

He, however, had a puncture in the next stage which lost him a minute and a half and demoting him to fourth in the APRC category.

He fought back gallantly to finish the day in second place among the APRC contenders.

The Rally of Whangarei covered a total of 16 special stages over a competitive distance of 283.28km.

Proton also enjoyed a clean sweep of the top three placings in the 2WD category with defending APRC 2WD champion Karamjit Singh taking top honours ahead of privateer Mike Young in another 1600cc Satria Neo and Proton’s newly-signed young driver Kenneth Koh. Koh, in only his first international rally, also clinched second place in the APRC Junior category behind Young.

Proton exerted total dominance in the APRC in 2011 to become the first car manufacturer to win all eight major individual titles in the APRC which included the APRC driver’s title, manufacturer’s title, the Teams Trophy; the FIA Asia Cup driver’s title, the FIA Pacific Cup driver’s title, the manufacturer’s title in the FIA APRC Rally Cup for two-wheel drive category; the APRC Rally Cup driver’s title; and FIA APRC Junior Cup driver’s title.

Meanwhile, Proton’s director of group marketing, branding and motorsports John Chacko said the participation of privately-run 1600cc Satria Neos underlined a strong and growing acceptance for the brand internationally.

APRC – Proton raih gelaran berganda


MCRAE yang memandu Proton Satria Neo S2000 mencatat kemenangan keempat pada APRC musim ini.

PROTON mengesahkan kejuaraan bagi kategori pemandu dan pengeluar pada Kejohanan Rali Asia Pasifik (APRC) selepas pemandunya, Alister McRae memenangi Rali China semalam.

Kejayaan tersebut telah memberikan penamat yang sempurna kepada Proton tahun ini.

McRae memandu Proton Satria Neo S2000 mencatat kemenangan keempat musim ini selepas menewaskan cabaran pemandu Findland, Jari Ketoma yang memandu Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X.

Rakan sepasukan McRae, Chris Atkinson berada di tempat ketiga untuk mengesahkan kemenangan 1-2 bagi kategori pemandu APRC untuk pasukan Proton.

Dominasi Satria Neo S2000 sepanjang tahun juga menghadiahkan kejuaraan kepada Proton bagi kategori pengeluar dalam APRC di hadapan Mitsubishi (kedua) dan Subaru (ketiga).

Keputusan tersebut turut membolehkan Proton menjadi pengeluar kereta pertama yang memenangi kesemua lapan kejuaraan individu utama dalam perlumbaan APRC.

Ia termasuk juara keseluruhan pemandu APRC, juara pengeluar APRC, Trofi Pasukan APRC, juara pemandu Piala Asia, juara pemandu Piala Pasifik, juara pengeluar Piala Rali APRC bagi kategori pemanduan dua roda, juara pemandu Piala Rali APRC bagi kategori pemanduan dua roda dan juara pemandu Piala Remaja APRC.

Pengarah Urusan Kumpulan Proton Holdings, Datuk Seri Syed Zainal Abidin Syed Mohamed Tahir berkata, secara keseluruhannya, tahun ini merupakan tahun yang menakjubkan bagi Proton.

“Keputusan di China memberi kesimpulan kepada tahun yang mencabar, namun memberikan makna yang tersendiri bagi Proton.

“Sebagai pengeluar, kami komited untuk menjadi lebih baik dan ini bukan sahaja dalam pertandingan, tetapi juga sebagai pengeluar kenderaan untuk pasaran global,” katanya dalam kenyataan akhbar yang dikeluarkan semalam.

Tambahnya, sukan permotoran merupakan salah satu daripada strategi utama untuk mempertingkatkan jenama Proton, terutamanya dalam pasaran yang disertainya.

“Sukan permotoran turut menyuntik elemen keseronokan dalam jenama dan sesuatu model, selain menyediakan platform bagi membangunkan teknologi untuk diaplikasikan ke dalam model di atas jalan,” katanya.