Published on November 4th, 2011 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
MICHELIN TAKE CUSTOMERS ON A SPELLBINDING RACING EXPERIENCE
The eagerness and excitement was clearly visible on Harriezan Ahmad’s face as he suited up and got ready for a once in a lifetime experience at the Super MICHELIN Pilot Experience (MPE) at the Sepang Formula One track recently. The thrill of being able to pilot a Formula MICHELIN single seater was simply unbelievable. Harriezan, an electrical engineer, was the lucky winner of a contest held in conjunction with the recent Michelin ‘Fill Up With Air’ (FUWA) campaign. “I did not think about the contest and was really taken aback! I remember filling up the contest form when I stopped to have my tyre air pressure checked at the FUWA station in MTD Gambang, Pahang but I would have never thought would actually win the spot at the MPE.
“This is definitely a rewarding and rare experience for me as I am sure I would not get an opportunity to steer and touch the pedal of a track race car like this again – The experience of handling a race car definitely feels far more exciting than what I could get from simply watching it on TV. I was amazed with the actual force and exhilaration I felt during the drive,” he said. Harriezan was joined by over 280 customers, tyre dealers, Michelin partners and journalists from ten countries across Asia Pacific who were treated to a host of thrilling racing experiences. Excited and raring to have their day on the race track, the participants braved the heat, the rain and the thundering roar of the exciting race cars awaiting them to have their chance at the closest they would ever get to feel like an F1 driver!
The exclusive MICHELIN Pilot Experience (MPE) is known for its unique high performance driving experience that showcases MICHELIN racing tyres prowess on the track that is renowned in the global motor sports arena and associated with major events including the Le Mans 24 Hours, FIA GT and Motocross. Backed by decades of race track experience in the world of motor sports, our leading-edge technical skills and exceptional performance is testament to the superiority of our high performance tyres which have kept us ahead of the game,” said MICHELIN Malaysia Sdn Bhd Managing Director, Yves Pouliquen. Pouliquen added that the expertise and vast knowledge derived from years of experience on the race track is translated into new tyre technology innovation and ensures that MICHELIN tyres are of the highest quality and performance.
“The MPE gives us the opportunity to showcase and share our latest technologies and innovations with consumers through a medley of exhilarating and adrenaline-pumping track activities. Some of these activities like the driving the Formula MICHELIN single seater – is a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience,” he added. The event kicked-off with activities off the track to get participants warmed up. After receiving a welcome briefing from the MICHELIN Motorsports team, participants were led to a special gravel track outside the Sepang circuit where they experienced a rugged rally style drive in Citroen C2 Rally cars which let them kick-up the dirt with some sharp cornering maneouvers.
Three power-packed Formula MICHELIN single seaters greeted the excited participants on the world class Sepang track as they were prepped on safety rules, driving techniques and the circuit course by MICHELIN’s professional racing instructors. Then the fun began, in full racing gear and strapped into the cockpit, the participants were in for an adrenaline-pumping racing experience as they took off in a burst of speed across the track. Like a bullet, the Formula MICHELIN single-seater rumbled to a roar and was pushed by some of the more daring and fearless drivers to reach its exhilarating 260kph top speed. The thrills continued with laps behind the wheels of Renault Clio Cup cars equipped with a sequential gear box, racing simulations, a Go-Kart race and the experience of being a pit crew member in the intensive ‘Pit Stop Challenge’.
Participants were also exposed to the sheer power of a Formula 2-seater and the Porsche GT3 Cup as they rode shotgun with MICHELIN professional drivers who let them feel the speed and G-force in a real racing setting which left them with an unforgettable experience.
“The MPE is an excellent event for us to share the exciting aspects of motor sports and the thrills of speed with our dealers and guests. We get to show them what our tyres can really do on the track, not just in terms of speed but the safety and handling aspects as well which are implemented in our full range of road tyres as well,” said Pouliquen.