The Proton R3 team, winner of last year’s Sepang 1000km (S1K) Endurance Race will be fielding a new car to defend its title – the Proton Saga – which will be competing in the annual race for the first time alongside the Proton Iriz.
The duo will be entrusted to bring home a second consecutive and fourth overall race win for the national carmaker.
For this year’s race, Proton opted for the Saga for its high torsional rigidity of its body, making it an ideal platform for competition use while its balanced handling and proven mechanical abilities are suited for the endurance race where cars are tested to the limits, clocking more than 180 laps in the process.
“The Proton Saga name has had a long history in competing and winning in various motorsports competitions and the S1K is the perfect platform to reintroduce Proton fans to our R3 racing division while reminding them about the racing heritage of our best-selling model,” said Chief Executive Officer of Proton Edar, Abdul Rashid Musa.
The four drivers who competed for the R3 team last year have been retained with last year’s winning pair, Admi Shahrul and James Veerapan, now tasked with piloting the Proton Saga to a podium finish while Fariqe Hairuman and Syafiq Ali will race in the Proton Iriz.
“This year we aim to get both cars on the podium, a tough task as the Proton Saga is a brand new car but with teamwork and a little bit of luck, I am confident of adding more glory to the company’s record of racing success,” said Proton R3, Team Principle, Gary Lee.
Typically, races like the Sepang 1000KM require teams to go flat out for the first few laps before driving at a pre-determined pace to preserve the car and components such as tyres and brakes,” he added.