Muhammad Iqbal Suji crowned 2022 Toyota GR Velocity champion, top 3 to attend regional finals!

Season 5 of the Toyota GR Velocity Esports Championship finally came to a close last Sunday at the grand finale event held at 1 Utama shopping centre, with Muhammad Iqbal Suji being crowned champion in the 2022 edition of the tournament.

Racing in front of a live audience and online fans, the 24-year-old sim racer from Selangor finished the final round of races ahead of nine other finalists to clinch a grand prize of RM20,000 cash. Standing alongside Muhammad Iqbal Suji on the podium were Muhammad Uzair in second, and Taj Izrin Aiman Taj Madira who finished in third place in the championship.

The three-race grand finale showdown consisted of a 15-minute sprint race and a 30-minute feature race at Brazil’s Autodromo Interlagos, followed by a final 40-minute feature race at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, with the sim racers getting behind the wheel of a 1,000bhp Toyota TS050 Hybrid.

After an eventful day with the three drivers swapping places in the championship lead, an emotional Muhammad Iqbal Suji finally came home first to win the championship, finishing some eight seconds ahead of Taj Izrin Aimar in P2.

“Winning the event made me recall all the emotions and frustrations of not getting the position that I felt I deserved over the last few years and now that I finally have, it feels great and steaming hot!,” said Muhammad Iqbal.

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Following the victory, Muhammad Iqbal will now lead a three-man Malaysian team, comprised of his two other compatriots in second and third place, to the Asia Pacific regional finals of the Toyota Gazoo Racing GT Cup on October 2. If victorious, the trio will also take on the colossal task of representing Asia in the global finals, which will be held in Monaco on November 25.

“Toyota’s on-track and online racing activities are about empowering the dreams of individuals – propelling them to excel. The organizing of the Toyota GR Velocity Esports Championship gives those who excel online an ideal platform to further develop and unleash their fullest potential with some even transitioning into real racing,” said UMW Toyota Motor President, Ravindran K, adding that Toyota’s combination of physical and online racing since 2018 has given the company the opportunity to contribute immensely to greater promoting Malaysian motorsports.

Aside from the main GR Velocity race, the grande finale weekend also featured four exhibition races involving drivers and celebrities competing in the Toyota Gazoo Racing Vios Challenge; members of the media (including yours truly, finishing in second place); invited gamers, as well as the young drivers in the Vios Challenge rookie class.

The celebrity race was won by actor Zizan Razak, followed by presenter Nabil Ahmad and actor Shukri Yahaya, who coincidentally also happen to be the top three contenders in the Promotional Class of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Vios Challenge series. The Vios Challenge rookies, meanwhile, saw four young drivers – Adele Lew, Nabil Azlan, Sharique Zulqarnain, and Muizz Musyaffa – taking up the challenge.



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